Obinna Odogwu, Abakaliki
Ebonyi State Governor, Chief David Umahi, has extended the relocation of Abakpa Market, Abakaliki, to the newly built International Market by two months.
With this extension, the traders have up till January 10, 2020 to move to the new market. The state government had earlier given the traders the grace of October 18, 2019.
Meanwhile, the traders have dragged the government to the state High Court seeking, among others, a restraining order over the proposed relocation.
Umahi announced the new date during a meeting with the traders in the market and their counterparts from Building and Aluminium Materials Market at governor’s lodge, Government House, Abakaliki.
The governor’s consideration followed the intervention by the leadership of the state chapter of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) which pleaded that the relocation date be extended to January next year to enable the traders make adequate arrangement for it.
“I am going to move the date of relocation of the market to 10th of January 2020 to honour CAN. But I must get an agreement from all of them. Anybody that is a market person that does not sign this agreement individually must leave by 10th”, he said.
Earlier, the traders through their counsel, Anthony Ani, SAN, had asked the court to restrain the state government from carrying out any action that would negatively affect their businesses.“There is an urgent need to restrain the defendants and their agents from victimizing, harassing or carrying out any punitive action against the applicants and their members in whatsoever manner in connection to this matter pending the hearing and determination of motion on notice,” they prayed.