Anambra: 90% of market crisis caused by govt functionaries - TC member

Chief Ucheagwu

Anambra: 90% of market crisis caused by govt functionaries - TC member

By Calis Mbadugha, Onitsha

A member of the Onitsha Bridgehead market caretaker committee, Anambra State, Chief Bonaventure Ucheagwu, disclosed Tuesday, that 90 per cent of market crisis was caused by government functionaries at Awka, seat of power, for selfish interest.

Making the disclosure while fielding questions from newsmen,  Chief Ucheagwu, who is also the chairman, Stakeholders/Leaders of Thought, Onitsha South Local Government Area, reiterated that until power is wrestled from these men at the seat of power and placed on transition committee chairmen in the 21 local Government Areas of the State, the State Government would continue to lose huge amount of money.

"Those at Awka are only interested in what they will benefit from markets and that is the major market problem. They don't know anything about market affairs. The Local Government chairmen are close to the grassroot and know every market and number of shops in the markets and amount of money to generate from each market.

"If the local Government Area chairmen are responsible for the appointment of those that will work in the markets, the revenue base  of the State will increase because they know all in the markets.

"Scores of shops were given approval by these functionaries without knowing even the location of the shops and quality of  materials used because they are based in Awka but the man at the local Government is with the traders and could easily detect inferior materials and unapproved shops," he posited.

Chief Ucheagwu who said that he has been in the market for over 30 years, lamented that government money goes to private pause because those appointed in market affairs are not only selfish but do not know anything about market affairs.

"From 2021 down wards to five years ego, revenue generated at Bridgehead market went to private pocket. The money was never remitted to the State Government. Most traders don't have receipts for stallage payments they made and some shops built without approval.
"2022 stallage fees at Bridgehead market were collected upfront and never remitted to the State Government. That is why I said that the transition committee chairmen in the entire local government Areas of the State, should be responsible for appointment of market chairmen and works to increase the revenue base of the State Government and restore decorum in markets.

"This calls for the conduct of local Government election for the chairmen to have executive power to appoint market chairmen instead of leaving it for government functionaries that know nothing in market affairs," he posited.

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