Mile 1 Flyover Market Chairman Laments Low Customer Patronage

… Blames Election Crisis

Kelechi Esogwa-Amadi

Chairman of Mile 1 Flyover Market, Port Harcourt, Mr Joseph Igwe, has bemoaned the low patronage by customers in the market which had resulted in many of the traders not selling their wares as they used to.

Speaking with TPCN today in his office at the market, Mr Joseph Igwe complained that the ongoing election crisis in Rivers State was responsible for the low patronage being witnessed in recent times in the market.

He said the election crisis was affecting the economy of the state, as investors were now being sceptical while the people were being cautious in spending money because of the uncertainty, tension, anger and apprehension in the state.

He urged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to announce the result of the March 9 governorship and House of Assembly elections without further delay so that the state could move forward like other states in the country.

He said the delay of the announcement of the result by INEC was responsible for the low business patronage being witnessed by traders in Mile 1 Flyover Market.

“The election controversy is affecting our business. People do not have money again to spend. The delay by INEC in announcing the result is making business to be dull. People no longer come to by things like before. I don’t why they are seizing the result. They are making many people to fear. They should not cause crisis in Rivers State,” Mr Joseph Igwe said.

He said the release of the election result by INEC would ensure the continued reign of peace in the state and country.

He added: “This is not the first election in Nigeria but I don’t know why they’re doing like this. We want peace in this state. Nigeria needs peace. They should announce the result let everybody rest.”

On the relationship between the Mile 1 Flyover Market leadership and the police operating in the area, he said it was cordial even though they were independent.

“The police can’t control the traders. The traders have their own chairman. I make sure we settle every matter that comes up here. It there is fracas, I settle it but if anybody is proving stubborn, we take him to where stubborn people go,” Mr Igwe said.

On sanitation in the market, the chairman said they took it serious, adding that they usually keep the market clean and that security was always tight.

Lending his own voice, one of the executive officers in the market, Vitalis Ozuzu, explained that there were two security teams that share the work into morning and evening shifts, adding that they also collaborate with the police to maintain security around the flyover.

“We’re working with the police but the one we cannot handle we give to the police,” Ozuzu further explained.