The popular Ile-Epo Foodstuff Market in Agbado Oke-Odo Local Council Development Area, Abule Egba area of Lagos has been demolished to pave way for a modern market befitting a mega city.
Findings show that the exercise was being carried out by the Agbado Oke-Odo LCDA, in conjunction with the developer, Total Value Integrated Limited.
The demolition, which commenced around 8am, was supervised by scores of well-armed task force officials, who ensured that there was no resistance from the traders.
Bulldozers were seen pulling down structures in the market, while others used sledge hammers in demolishing the market, even as thousands of traders were seen frantically trying to evacuate their wares.
Some of the traders said even though they were served with notice, the duration was short, calling on the government to come to their aid as they had nowhere to go.
A trader, who simply identified himself as Zakariya, lamented that he did not know where to go after his shop had been demolished.
This was just as Mama Muiz and Inusa Saliu, urged the government to come to their aid as their means of livelihood had been taken away from them.
Mrs. Augustina Egbuonu, 68, who claimed to be the Financial Secretary of the Ile-Epo Market Association, said she had been in the market for 20 years and that she invested N18million in the market, but lamented that it had gone down the drain with the demolition.
Speaking on the development, Managing Director, Total Value Integrated Limited, Chris Onyekachi, said the traders were giving 18 months notice to vacate the market for redevelopment, adding that while some had left the market, others refused to do so.
“We have given them nothing short of 18 months notice to leave the market. Many of them have packed out while some remained. We came here around 7:30am for the demolition. We have given them alternative place in the market.
“We are not demolishing the whole market now. We are doing it in three phases,” he said, adding that the market was an eyesore not befitting a mega city like Lagos,” he said.
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