By Okey Sampson, Umuahia
The Abia state government has ordered the closure of all scrap metal and waste markets (Akpakara) in Aba, its commercial capital.
A statement from the state commissioner for trade and investment, Chief John Okiyi-Kalu, said Governor Okezie Ikpeazu had given the directive to immediately close state markets pending proper identification of people. involved in the collection and sale of waste as well as the proper organization of trade to eliminate associated criminal activities.
A total of 31 such markets and sites have been identified and closed. They include Port Harcourt Express Road through Tonimas Junction; Umuode Village by Nwanyi Moto in Osisioma; Port Harcourt Express Road near Harmony Park by Enyimba;
Port Harcourt Express Road by Ubani Junction; Uratta Integrated Market Scrap Dealers and Backyard Gate Alaoji along Port Harcourt Road.
Others are, Port Harcourt Express Road through Okwuonu Junction, Uratta; Ariaria Market after Bakassi’s office; Old Express via Samek Faulks Road; 51 PH Road near Hollywood, Aba; path to the cemetery by the railroad; Weeks Road by Cemetery Road, Aba; 77 Clifford Road, Aba; Etche Road Scrap Dealers and School Road by Old Court.
Also listed are Constitution Crescent by John 3:16 Ministry, Aba; Peoples Road, Ogbor-Hill; SANCAS School, Ikot-Ekpene Road, Ohanze near Dan Dollars Gas Station; Inside Ehiere Market; Ikot-Ekpene Road by EZESCO Ogbor-Hill, Aba; Alaoji by EASYON Filling Station Ogbor-Hill, Aba; Alaoji near High Two Ogbor-Hill gas station, Aba; Umuafor Federal School by Lord Chosen Church, Ogbor-Hill, Aba and Federal Road by Obikabia behind Uche Gas Station, Aba.
Also included are markets/sites opposite Police Station in Zone 6, Ogbor-Hill, Aba; 3, Glass Road, near Anaemerem Hospital; Water Side by Umuoba Road, behind Eziama Police Station, Ogbor-Hill, Aba; Opposite OLAS Oil, Ogbor-Hill, Aba; Georges Street by Bible College and 1b, Ozuitem Road by Ngwa Road.
While the statement urged market leaders and relevant security officers to ensure compliance with the directive, leaders from the various scrap metal and state waste market groups were summoned on Tuesday to meet with the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Trade and Investment, Michael Egwu, May 17 at 11 a.m. at the Secretary of State, Ogurube Layout, Umuahia.
The management of Inner Galaxy Steel Company Ltd, Ukwa West LGA, which is the state’s largest scrap buyer, was also invited to the meeting.
There has been a public outcry in the state over the activities of scavengers who travel the extra miles, including breaking into people’s homes in search of trash and, in most cases, carrying away valuable goods which they in turn sell on scrap markets. site.