-ISAMATA president gets kudos
Imo traders who originally owned shops at Old stadium lane plaza in Owerri Municipal Council before it was demolished by the Rochas Okorocha administration in the state are presently in a jubilant mood as they applaud the Hope Uzodinma government for returning their shops to them after painstakingly reconstructing and modernizing it.
Some of the traders who excitedly commented on the development said, the governor has restored the joy of the displaced traders, including those who had been stranded, helpless and frustrated since their shops which were their means of livehood were demolished in 2017.
The Imo State government in a letter to that effect signed by the commissioner for commerce and industry , Hon Simon Egbebulem dated February 10, 2022 said, “sequel to a painstaking investigation and consultations, the Ministry of Commercee and Industry is satisfied with the facts members of your forum actually bought the shops from Imo State Government through Imo State Sports Council on a 50 years Ownership Agreement which was not fully consummated before the demolition and reconstruction of the building, by the administration of Owelle Rochas Okorocha.
“The Ministry of Commerce and Industry having confirmed the sum of Thirty Three Million Naira (N33, 000,000) payments made into the State Government Single Treasury Account (TSA) by your members for shops in the reconstructed shop building, hereby issue your members the authority to take possession of this shop building, and re-issue the shops to them.
“The Ministry of Commerce and Industry, is also satisfied with the decision of Umuorononjo Community to cooperate with the Original Shop owners and the State Government to actualize this take over in the interest of peace, and justice.
Please accept the warm regards of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry.”
It would recalled that the Rochas Okorocha administration in the guise of its ill-conceived urban renewal program demolished the Eke Ukwu Owerri market and in the process, one Somtochukwu Ibeanusi a 10 year old only son of his parents lost his life, amidst wide spread condemnation.
Reacting to the development some of the traders expressed gratitude to Hon Simon Ebegbulam, Commissioner for Commerce and Industry, Hon. Emmanuel Ezeanochie (aka Shenco), President, Imo State Amalgamated Traders Association (ISAMATA) for their individual efforts to ensure that the traders smile again.