Bamigbola Gbolagunte, Akure
Market women in Igbokoda, headquarters of Ilaje Local Government Area of Ondo State, yesterday undressed to protest government’s plan to demolish illegal structures at the Igbokoda International Market.
The protest caused serious traffic congestion on the major roads in the town as the protesters barricaded the roads leading to the market.
The women in their hundreds kicked against the government’s action, claiming they were not properly notified.
The protesters, who were all women undressed to vent their anger against government officials.
In his reaction, Permanent Secretary, Ondo State Agency for Commerce, Industries and Cooperative Services, Sunday Lebi, said government would not tolerate any act of disobedience.
He said the government frowned at the attitude of the women who disrupted government officials from carrying out their duty.
He said the officials were prevented by some market women who undressed in protest and started raining abusive words on them.
Lebi said the agency had the mandate of making the market functional to enable it generate income into government’s coffers.
He said: “It is an aberration for anyone to erect additional structure which stands as obstruction to human and vehicular movements.
“We went there to ensure sanity, having had discussion with them before the day and similar exercise had been carried out in some markets across the state.
“Illegal structures destroy aesthetics value and orderliness of the market and they are dangerous to lives because vehicles do go in and come out,” he said.
He said government would continue to employ diplomatic and realistic approach to address the situation to ensure sanity in every state-owned market.