Jeff Amechi Agbodo, Onitsha
Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra has ordered the re-opening of 63 markets as from next Monday.
This is even as the state has decried the proliferation of fake, substandard and adulterated motor lubricants in the state.
Obiano who made the announcement, yesterday, after a closed-door meeting with market leaders said businesses at the markets would be conducted only after traders have participated in trainings organised by the state government.
He said each market must have a COVID-19 team with the responsibility of enforcing preventive measures and guidelines set by the state, among them the compulsory wearing of face mask, provision of running water, hand sanitisers and social distancing. He said markets that are not ready with their COVID-19 team would not be allowed to re-open.
The governor also urged industrialists to re-open their businesses, but urged them to observe prevention measures.
Obiano said at the meeting with market leaders it was agreed that the markets would close early to avoid the usual rush associated with closing late, adding, however, that Anambra boundaries remain closed with schools and civil service shut.
Obiano said the NCDC had agreed to upgrade the Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University Teaching Hospital, Amaku, Awka, to a COVID-19 test centre.
Mewnwhile, Senior Special Adviser to Governor Willie Obiano on Petroleum Products, Peter Nwosu, in a statement, said the state had commenced move to deal decisively with unscrupulous elements in the petroleum industry whose stock in trade is the production of fake, substandard and adulteration of lubricants.
He government would collaborate with security and federal regulatory agencies and the Anambra State branch of Lubricants Dealers Association to end the activities of the economic saboteurs.
“The state government observed that the proliferation of fake, substandard and adulterated lubricants can be traced to the issuance of lubricants import licences to people who are novice and without knowledge of the industry, and this trend if not checkmated could result in closure of legitimate existing plants, unemployment and economic loss to the state. As base oil is not treated and has a lot of water and impurity which easily damages car engines and environmental pollution through dangerous and uncontrollably emission of gases into the atmosphere,” he said.