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Ife Market Inferno: Traders still groan, cry for assistance



Traders at Oja Tuntun (New Market) in Ile-ife Osun State are still groaning in pain barely a week after they lost their goods and shops to fire outbreak.

Most of them who still hang around the market without nothing to sell and are calling on government at all levels for assistance.

The traders lamented that they lost all they had including the loan they took recently to the inferno.

While narrating her ordeal, Mrs. Ololade Oyeleye, a textile dealer at Oja-tuntun, Odo-ogbe which caught fire on 1st of December, 2020 lamented that she has lost everything she had to the inferno

“I learnt about it on the second day, that is Wednesday, when I got there I was almost fainting. Because I didn’t see anything here again. Everything has perished. Nothing is left, everything has burnt to ashes. It was very scary. I m a textile dealer here. I sell in bulk. I had too two big shops here.

“In the two shops I lost nothing less than 16 million. When this Christmas was coming we went to borrow 5 million from our people. We have used it to buy wares. We bought different textile materials, laces, Ankara and so on just because Christmas is coming we had to have better material in the shop”, she groaned.

Mrs. Oyeleye blamed the extent of the damage on inability of fire service to quench the inferno just as she called on government at all levels to come to their aid.

“They said the fire started from on shop and don’t even know. All this fire brigade people when they came they couldn’t do anything. They said there was no water and other materials to quench the fire.

“My demand from all tiers of government. They should help us, have mercy on us. All the money is not ours, we may have small but we borrowed plenty of money to join what we had and to pay the money back is not easy for us. If we get somewhere to sell again, with time we know will recover. First thing they should help us rebuild this place to standard. If we have little things we will begin again. They should consider those of us that suffered the loss” Oyeleye appealed.

Another victim, Mrs. Chinyere keke who sells shoes and bag in her account of the fire outbreak said “It stated in the night at 11pm. With didn’t know how the fire broke out. We didn’t have water within the market. We need fire fighter around here.

“Government should please help us because we took loan to buy the goods. As we are, some took loan from LAPO. Like me now, I borrowed 4 million, some are more than that. Old women and old papa are here. I sell shoes, bag and wears. I just went to Lagos to buy the goods. Even pin I did take out of the fire”.

Meanwhile, Chairman, lfe Central local government, Hon. Yera Elugbaju in an interview with newsmen said, the state government had concluded plans to rebuild the market even before the fire outbreak.

“Immediately we reported to our Governor. The Governor swung into action because there was already a plan to rebuilt the market. The governor has assured us that the project will commence very soon.

“He has called those people that will build the market. The project consultant has come here from Abuja to look at the place. The architectural drawing and survey are already in place. The construction could have started if not because of the coronavirus pandemic”.

Hon. Elugbaju also assured the victims of government’s assistance, with the visit of the Commissioner for commerce and cooperative, Bode and officials of the National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA.

“The NEMA has inspected extent of the damage of the fire outbreak. They sympathise with the victims. The collated data data of property lost and assured the victims of Federal Government assistance. We thank God that no life was lost”, Hon. Elugbaju said.

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Staff Audit: Bedridden Pensioners To Partake Via Telephone – Osun Govt



Gov Ademola Adeleke

Osun State Government has said all bedridden pensioners and others with serious health challenge will henceforth have their audit exercise conducted through telephone.

A statement by signed by the State Commissioner for Information and Public Enlightenment, Kolapo Alimi on Monday revealed that such pensioners, will no longer be required to be physically present at the venue of the screening exercise.

The statement added that pensioners who are currently outside the State would have their screening conducted via the same means.

It also said “Pensioners outside the state at the moment no longer need to travel down to Osun State as they will also be having their screening through the telephone.

“Additionally, pensioners in the diaspora will also be screened only through video calls.

“In line with the above, the Pension Board is expected to make available all the particulars, especially pictures of pensioners to the Consultant, for ease of identification during the video call screenings.

“The above directives take immediate effect.”

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Pensioners Collapse During Screening In Osun



On of the revived Collapsed Pensioners on stretcher

…Govt should decentralise process to prevent avoidable deaths – Retirees

Pensioners in Osun State have appealed to the State government to decentralise the ongoing screening of its workforce including retirees.

The call became necessary as some of the aged retirees collapsed on Monday within the premises of the Center for Black Culture and International Understanding, Osogbo, venue of the ongoing screening.

It took the intervention of the medics of the State Ambulance Service to revive and stablise the victims.

Retirees, numbering about 2,000 old men and women who are visibly aged, frail and in some cases sick, were at the venue for the screening exercise.

A number of them who could not withstand long time standing were seen either, lying down, sleeping or sitting on the bare floor to avoid eventuality.

Many of the pensioners were visibly angry for what they described as inhuman treatment by the handlers of the exercise.

Sunday Omotosho decried the arrangement and the eventual treatments of his colleagues who came for the exercise from across the State.

Though, he agreed that the exercise as sanctioned by the State government was desirable, but was of the opinion that the process would have been made easier if it were to be done on local government or zonal basis.

As at press time, the exercise was yet to commence as the consultant in charge, Saadat Bakri-Ottun was yet to arrive the venue, hence the wait prolonged.

The staff audit was earlier suspended for weeks by the state House of Assembly over inhuman treatment meted to the civil servants by the consultant, but the suspension was lifted after she promised to correct her mistakes.

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Breaking: Protest Rocks Iree Poly Over Removal of Rector



….ASUP, Students lock school gate to prevent academic activities

Heavy protesters have laid seige on the entrance of the Osun State Polytechnic, Iree, Osun State against the removal of the institution’s rector, Dr. Tajudeen Adewale Odetayo.

The State governor, Senator Ademola Adeleke had reportedly suspended Odetayo and allegedly replaced him by his kinsman.

Protested gathered at the frontage of the polytechnic entrance as early as 7:30 on Tuesday morning carrying different placards with different inscriptions to register their displeasure against the removal of the embattled rector.

The school gate has been put under lock and key, by the students and the school chapter of the Academic Staff Union of the Polytechnic, ASUP preventing academic activities and other activities on the campus.

More to follow…

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