The Edo State Government has commenced fumigation of markets across the state as part of measures to check the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
During a tour of selected markets in the state, officials of the state government were seen spraying chemicals in the markets, after traders who deal in foodstuffs were relocated to adjourning primary and secondary schools marked out as temporary markets.
The markets visited by the journalists include Oba market, Ekiosa market, New Benin Market, New Market, while relocation exercise was monitored in Ogbe Primary School and Obaseki/Ezoti Primary School located within Benin City, the Edo State Capital.
At Ohuoba Primary School, trading was seamless as officials of Edo State Public Works Volunteers (PUWOV) Scheme, Edo State Traffic Control and Management Agency, (EDSTMA) and Nigerian Police Force were on ground to ensure enforcement of the state government’s directives on proper washing of hands before customers were allowed into the market.
At Emokpae Model Primary School at Mission Road in Benin City, traders were observed trying to get into the school grounds.
An official of the PUWOV scheme, who pleaded anonymity, said “We are already mapping out the area and spaces for the traders as our focus is on maintaining social distance. We can only take 70 traders here.”
General Manager, Edo State Signage Agency, Mr. David Giwa-Amu, who is in charge of the fumigation of Oba market, said the markets needed to be sanitized in the light of the increased number of COVID-19 cases in the state.
“We have commenced fumigation at Oba market, which is also going on across the 18 Local Government Areas of the state,” he said.
Assistant Commandant, Special Duties, Peace Corps of Nigeria, Edo State Command, Patriot Iyen George, said they have been mandated to enlighten the people on the dangers of disregarding government’s directive to stem the spread of the pandemic.