The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and Enugu State Emergency Management Agency (ESEMA) on Wednesday pledged assistance to some traders at Afor-Opi Market, Nsukka Local Government Area whose shops were gutted by fire.
Many shops at the market were destroyed by fire on July 27, when a fuel tanker lost control, fell and caught fire in front of the market, destroying goods, shops and buildings worth millions of naira.
Though no life was lost, but one trader, John-paul Ugwuanyi who was caught in the inferno sustained injuries is still receiving treatment at Bishop Shanahan Hospital, Nsukka.
Speaking, Mrs Ngozi Echeazu, the Zonal Coordinator of NEMA South-East, expressed sadness over the fire incident.
Echeazu who was represented by Mrs Shantel Chukwu from NEMA Office said the visit was to enable the agency conduct on-the-spot assessment of things damaged by the fire incident and commiserate with traders in the market.
“NEMA shares in your pains, but we are grateful to God that no life was lost,
“We have visited John-paul Ugwuanyi in Shanahan Hospital who sustained injuries in some parts of his body, we are happy that he is responding to treatment
“NEMA will assist all traders affected in that fire incident, so that they will go back to their business,” she said.
Also speaking, Mrs. Chinasa Mbah, Head of ESEMA said it was Mr Pius Ezeugwu, representing Nsukka East Constituency at Enugu State House of Assembly who informed the agency about the fire incident.
“ESEMA and NEMA are here today to see things by ourselves and conduct on-the-spot assessment of things this unfortunate fire incident destroyed in this market.
“Our amiable governor, Mr. Peter Mbah is deeply concerned and touched about this incident, he is waiting for our report and we are sure that you will hear from him in no distant time” she said.
In remark, Mr. Linus Eze, Chairman Afor-Opi Market Traders Association who conducted ESEMA and NEMA officials around the affected market said that, many shops, were destroyed in the fire incident.
He lamented that the incident had put the affected traders into an untold hardship as most of them have no other means of livelihood,
Eze appealed to local, state and Federal Governments as well as philanthropists to come to the aid of affected traders.
“Please, NEMA and SEMA should take your reports directly to President Bola Tinubu and Gov.Peter Mbah , we need their urgent interventions, this is too much for us to bear,”Eze said.
Also in a remark, Ezeugwu commended the NEMA and ESEMA officials for the visit for assessment of things destroyed by the fire.
He urged Enugu State and Federal Governments to fix the 9th-Mile-Obollo Afor-Makurdi and 9th mile-Abor-Ukehe-Opi-Makurdi roads that have been in deplorable condition for a long time to avert future occurrences of such incidents.
Ezeugwu, however, appealed to the affected traders to exercise patience, expressing optimism that very soon NEMA abd SEMA would come to their aid (NAN)