The Imo State government has issued a statement in response to the protests carried out today over the relocation of Eke-Ukwu market.
It is highly regrettable that a group of women could be deceived into carrying out a protest that could rightly described as uncalled for, over the State government’s good intention to relocate Ekeukwu market to a better place.
It is equally on record that successive governments in the State had also tried to move the market out of its current location to a more convenient place, but such previous efforts had also been frustrated by this kind of protest.
It therefore requires a Political Will on the part of any government to ensure the relocation of the market to a more ideal place. It is this Political Will that Governor Rochas Okorocha is exercising at the moment with regard to the relocation of Ekeukwu market.
The truth is that there is no other acceptable reason any Patriotic Citizen of the State could oppose the relocation of the market except on ground of selfish interest. In all considerations, the relocation of the Ekeukwu market is long overdue, all things being equal.
With the rapid growth of Owerri into a model City, it is no longer feasible to allow the Ekeukwu to remain where it is at the moment.
It is a known fact that Douglas Road cannot be recovered from its deplorable condition with the Ekeukwu market allowed to remain in its current location. Granted too that those who built the market at that place meant well, but they must have done so in consideration of the prevailing scenario at that time.
But time brings a lot of changes. At the moment, nobody would have even thought about locating the market where it is now. The best action at present is to move the market, which the government has done.
The traders themselves should be happy about this development. They are not doing themselves any good if they do not see the wisdom in what the government is doing with regard to the relocation of the market to a more convenient place. And the traders should only pray that the new place should attract to them a lot of new things.
The governor’s appeal on the part of all and sundry in the State on the issues of relocation and expansion of roads remains valid. Whatever the governor is doing now is for the good of the State and her people. And if those before Governor Okorocha had exercised the kind of passion he is now displaying in working for Imo people the story today would have been different and indeed in the positive.
All in all, history and posterity give the best judgement. And at the end of the day they will obviously return favourable verdict to Owelle Okorocha over his actions as the governor of the State because he means well.
Chief Press Secretary to the Governor
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