By Jethro Ibileke
Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State on Wednesday paid an on-the-spot assessment of the impact of the inferno that destroyed the Benin Auto Spare Parts Market.
He assured traders whose shops were destroyed by the midnight fire, of government’s support to get them back to business.
The governor gave the assurance while assessing damages wrecked by the fire incident in the market located at Uwelu, Egor local government area of the state.
Some of the affected traders had attempted to commit suicide by jumping into the raging fire that destroyed their goods before they were held back by sympathisers.
Obaseki, who sympathised with the traders, told them that a committee would be set up to unravel the cause of the inferno which destroyed goods worth millions of naira.
He urged them to be peaceful while the circumstances surrounding the fire outbreak would be ascertained to prevent future occurrence.
The committee, he said, would within one week investigate the cause of the fire, ascertain the number of traders whose goods were damaged and the monetary value of goods lost, which he said would enable the state government provide assistance to the victims.
“I will hold a meeting with the Head, Edo Fire Service, sister agencies which helped in putting out the fire; members of the State Executive Council and officials of Egor LGA this afternoon and a team will be set up to investigate the fire outbreak.
“The team will also advise the state government on measures to put in place to ensure that fire outbreak in markets are minimised and prevented, where possible,” he added.
In his remarks, Chairman of the Motor Spare Parts Association, Uwelu Market, Mr. Augustine Osaretin, said the arrival of officials of the Fire Service ensured the market was not completely reduced to rubble.