By Sani Gazas Chinade, Damaturu
The Borno State Governor Professor Babagana Umara Zulum on Monday in Maiduguri hosted hundreds of victims, most of them traders at the Monday Market whose shops and goods worth billions of naira, were razed by an inferno that engulfed the market yesterday,
Governor while hosting them, presented a cheque of one billion naira at the spot for onward disbursement as emergency palliatives to the victims, pending the outcome of an assessment committee.
Zulum during a statewide broadcast yesterday, announced a palliative of one billion naira which came after he visited the scene and mobilized armed forces to secure the market immediately.
The Maiduguri Monday Market, said to be the largest in the northeast, was completely burnt by fire that lasted for some hours. The fire began between 1am and 2am from yet to be ascertained cause(s).
Zulum when he receives the members of Maiduguri Monday market in the Government house said that, “Once again, I sympathize with you over the unfortunate fire disaster that razed the entire Maiduguri Monday market. Many of you have lost your lifetime savings. I urge you to take this as a trial from the Almighty Allah. As your governor, I will work with other stakeholders to do everything we can to provide the needed support to all victims. I have the assurances of President Muhammadu Buhari that the federal government will complement the effort of the state government”.
Governor Zulum informed the victims that he had appointed a respectable man of integrity, Engr. Zarami Dungus, a former permanent secretary, to chair a committee that will immediately begin to verifiably identify eligible victims and disburse the one billion naira to them.
According to him the funds is to provide urgent support to the victims pending other measures to be adopted by the state government.
He directed that the committee should comprise representatives of all stakeholders associated with the market which should include a representative of the Monday Market joint forum, a representative from the traders association, and another representative from the Monday Market car park, amongst others.
Zulum prayed that the disaster, which had happened on previous occasions, does not happen ever again. He promised that government intends to take far reaching preventive measures during reconstruction of the market by the will of Almighty Allah.