The Governor of Edo State, Godwin Obaseki, has ordered the closure of Santana Market following claims of irregularities and lack of social amenities, including parking space, functional toilets, running water, and relevant facilities to support emergency response.
The market, which is located at the Sapele Road axis of Benin, serves as an alternative to hundreds of residents who do not want to go to the markets in the main town.
Governor Obaseki shut down the market after holding a meeting with his executives on Thursday.
According to the Special Adviser to the Governor on Media and Communication, Mr Crusoe Osagie, the market was situated in the wrong location, which was worsened by a large number of sellers and customers patronizing the market.
Osagie also confirmed that the new guidelines for the operations of open markets in the state would soon be made public. Through his spokesperson, Osagie pledged government’s support to the affected traders and added that the Okha Local Government Area Council will render help to the first set of traders who show interest in relocating.
He urged them to liaise with local government officials to direct and mobilize them to the newly acquired land that was meant for the relocating traders. The two new locations include the Dumez Road and down Sapele Road.
Governor Obaseki further revealed plans of the government and local government thus: “We have a package that would ease the relocation of the affected traders, particularly the first set of traders to move. The state government would offer them N50,000 each while Ikpoba Okha LGA would give them N10,000 each to ease their relocation and help them settle at the markets.”