Information reaching 247ureports.com indicates that if Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje does not act fast, the multi-billion Naira Kofar Ruwa Iron and Rod market may shrink into a major crisis capable of consuming lives and property. 247ureports learnt that on Friday, 8 April, traders at the market who are majorly Igbos locked their shops and ran away for fear of being attacked when the chairman of Dala Local Government Area, , Alhaji Suleiman Dan Isli, invaded the market with hundreds of armed bandits in his bid to erect illegal shops in the market. Already, Kofar Ruwa Iron and Rod Dealers Association (KRIRDA) has asked for the intervention of Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje so as to save their business and also save Kano from being engulfed by another round of crisis. Speaking to journalists at the market on Sunday, KRIRDA President, Chief Anayochukwu Ike described as improper, the decision of the chairman of Dala Local Government Area to build lock-up shops in the frontage of their shops. According to him, carrying out such project will not only disorganize the entire market, but will also make it impossible for trailers bringing in their goods to have access into the market, adding that the frontage of their shops remain the only space they keep iron and rods.
According to him, even when the Council authorities insisted on erecting the building, “we decided to discuss with them on the possibilities of even buying the space so that peace can reign. At the initial stage, we agreed with the Committee set up by the Council chairman that we would pay N300, 000 for each space, but to our surprise, they came back and jacked the money to N850, 000.” Chief Ike who said members of his association pay all taxes and levies to the state and local government as at when due, lamented that erecting another structure within the market means getting them out of business.
“If there are plans to relocate us, they should come out clear and explain to us. There is no way we can remain in this market with those structures there, unless they have decided to get us out of business; may be, because they don’t like our face. We have been in this market for a very long time. We have maintained cordial relationship with the authorities of Dala Local Government. We have been generating revenue for the development of the Local Government and Kano state government. We now wonder why they want to stampede us out of business,” Chief stated.
According to him, after exhausting all possible means of negotiation, “when they remained adamant, we went to Court and got an injunction restraining the Council authorities and their representatives from erecting any structure within the market, but immediately the injunction expired, they started digging holes in front of our shops. Last Friday, they came with Yandabas (area boys), armed with arrows and knives as they were digging foundation in front of our shops. That action brought serious tension within the market and the entire state as many of us hurriedly locked our shops and ran for dear life.”
Chief Ike said not even several appeals by the Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIG) in charge of Zone One could stop Dala Local Government chairman, Alhaji Suleiman Dan Isli from building illegal lockup shops in the market, blocking shops and offices. He, however, appealed to Governor Ganduje and other stakeholders and opinion leaders in Kano state to wade into the matter and stop the erection of more structures in Kofar Ruwa rod market, “because if they go ahead to build that shop, they have crippled our markets.
“Besides, we all know the dangers inherent in jam-packed markets. We don’t sell Cray fish, what we sell are iron and rods which are naturally packed in open space, now if you come and block that space simply because you want to generate revenue, how and where do we then pack our goods; we are very much worried and we call on Governor Ganduje to use his good office to save our business,” he appealed. 247ureport.com reports that worse hit in the intrusion is the Aphamic Line of Kofar Ruwa rod market where foundation were dug just in the front of the traders offices and their goods exposed at the mercy of criminals. Investigations also revealed that if the state government delay further in calling Dala Council chairman to order, the traders are threatening to embark on a violent protest that will negatively affect the relative peace being enjoyed in the state.
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