Governor of Anambra State, Prof. Charles Soludo, has directed all markets in the state to start opening for business on Mondays from next week.
Soludo gave the directive during a meeting with leaders of 91 markets and transport unions in the state, on Friday in Awka.
He said that the preliminary survey conducted showed that more than N19.6 billion was being lost due to closure of businesses every Monday in the state.
The governor said that the directive had become necessary due to the obvious negative impacts, which the sit-at-home being observed in Anambra and other states in the South-Eastern zone, were having.
He said that he was not against people being sympathetic to the cause of the Leader of Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, currently being held in detention.
“People should devout time to pray for him, while we leaders continue to follow up the matter because I believe that through dialogue, the matter will be resolved”, he said.
He assured that adequate security would be provided across the state to enforce the directive.
Soludo also told the union leaders about his administration’s plan to usher in a new order in various markets and parks across the state.
“In the next three months, we will put in caretaker committees in markets with leadership problem, but in about one year, we will conduct fresh elections in all the markets.
“When the election will be held, we will adopt ‘option A4’ so that proper people will take up leadership positions”, he said.
Soludo said that before now, market leaders used to collect revenue for government, adding, however, that such practice would stop.
The governor stressed the need for people to help restore the sanitary condition of Onitsha, Nnewi and other major towns as well as stop illegal construction of buildings.
In his remarks, Chairman, Bridge Head Markets, Mr Sunny Obinze, appealed to the governor to allow them meet with their subjects before enforcement of the order.
Others, who also spoke at the occasion, commended the governor for his thoughtfulness, assuring that they would support his desire to sanitise the state.