Okezie Ikpeazu, the Abia State Governor has accused the opposition parties of instigating the current crisis in Ariaria International Market, after three days torrential rain led to massive flooding in the market.
Ikpeazu stated this on Tuesday during a town hall meeting with the affected traders after inspecting the extent of damage at the ongoing re-construction of the A-Line Section of the market.
Represented by the commissioner for trade and investment, Chief John Okiyi Kalu, the governor expressed dissatisfaction with those behind the ungodly plot, warning them to desist from the act.“We have received information on plots by politically sponsored hoodlums to hide behind this nature induced challenges to unleash destruction and looting of goods belonging to innocent traders in the market,” he said.
He advised the plotters in their own interests to desist from such a course as the government has directed the security agencies to deal decisively with the trouble makers and their sponsors.
Ikpeazu also announced a two-year tax waiver for the affected traders including exemption from payment of revenues collected by the state and local government agents in the market.
He said while the construction will continue, the government is to ensure that as soon as the rains abate, construction of A-Line Road and associated drains will commence and conclude during the dry season window.
“We, therefore, wish to seek the continuing partnership, support and understanding of all the traders and visitors to the market for the successful execution of this phase of the project,” he said.