Written by Sarah NEGEDU

Market days: Traders want FCTA to consider non-food sellers

Market associations in the nation’s capital have appealed to the FCT Administration to further consider relaxing the lock down on market days, as well as permit selling of other commodities alongside food items.

The Committee of Chairmen and Secretaries of the various market associations made the plea when the body visited the FCTA to show their support for the efforts being made to contain the spread of COVID-19 in the Territory.

Chairman of the Committee, Raphael Okorie, said that the Association will like to see an easing of the lockdown especially on market operational days, adding that the association would like the markets to open 3 times a week and also allow for the selling of other commodities besides food items which is currently in effect.

Speaking on the implementation of the lockdown, Okorie said, “The lockdown is the safest thing that will happen to the FCT to ensure the safety of lives during the pandemic.”

Okorie who is also the Chairman of the Wuse Market Traders Association said the Committee was in the FCTA to show appreciation to the FCT Minister, Muhammad Bello, for the way he is successfully managing the pandemic in the FCT.

In the words of Okorie, “We are here to appreciate the Minister for all he has done to see that Abuja has not turned to a disaster zone. We are here to say that we are solidly behind all the decisions, policies and programmes that the Minister has implemented to keep FCT residents safe and also well fed with the palliatives distribution that is ongoing.”

The Minister, in his response thanked the market associations for making economic activities in the FCT very vibrant and their support for the FCTA in the fight against COVID-19.

Bello said that the FCT Administration had taken note of the requests from the Market Associations and will present them during its weekly COVID-19 review meetings for further discussions. He however reminded the market leaders that despite increasing the number of business hours from 8:00 am to 3:00pm, from the initial 10:00 am to 2:00pm, the activities at the markets still left a lot to be desired in terms of social distancing.

He also called for the continuous cooperation of traders and market association in the FCT in the fight against COVID-19 while praying that God will guide all to do the right things.



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