Abuja Markets Management Limited (AMML) has denied allegation of extortion and planned demolition of shops in Garki Model Market by some petty traders in the market.
There was a peaceful protest by some traders in the market numbering about 20 who alleged that the market managers were extorting them and going ahead with the demolition of shops in the face of an existing court Order.
But in its reaction, Abuja Markets Management stated that there was no iota of truth in the claims.
The market managers in a statement signed by its corporate affairs manager, Mr Innocent Amaechina, said that the said protest was designed by a few individuals who were pursuing the agenda of their paymasters to discredit its good work in the market and undermine the existing atmosphere, ostensibly for selfish goals.
“We however thank God that the generality of the traders of Garki Model Market had a totally different and of course, favourable view of Abuja Market which explained why the plans of these dissidents failed woefully”, the statement read.
“For the records”, it continued, “contrary to the lies they spewed, there was nothing like extortion by AMML and that is why they could not be specific. Garki Model Market is owned and managed by AMML. The area in question is a section of the old informal sector that they stayed in illegally because it was not part of the market until it was allocated to AMML in 2013 along with other plots adjoining the market to enable it provide for relevant but nonexistent facilities like Warehouses, purpose- built cold rooms, additional parking, toilets and alternative exit routes.”
The statement recalled that there have been two recent fire incidents in that section and both from make-shift cold rooms used by the traders. According to them, valuables were lost prompting the traders themselves to write and later reminded AMML on the need to expedite actions in sanitizing that section and providing befitting Cold Room.
“However, in order to guarantee minimal adverse effect of this improvement on the traders, even if they were squatters, we sat with those to be affected, on an integration plan. They saw reason with us and that is why over 200 have been successfully relocated to a section of the market purposely built for such trade.Read Full Story