Authored by Chima Onyekach For (TBP)


The destruction of both the Eke-Ukwu ancestral market and the Ama-Hausa market should have been avoided if Governor Rochas Okorocha had allowed his pride not to override him. I am not in any way against the development of Owerri town but every government must be conscious of the implication of forcefully destroying a long standing traditional heritage and the prevailing economic recession ravishing the country must also be taken into account by any sensible government.

Rochas Okorocha had sworn to make sure the Eke-Ukwu ancestral market of the Owerri people is demolished after his earlier attempt to do so was rebuffed by ‘ancestral spirits’ who slapped him in his office. He was flown to India for medical attention after the slap where he luckily survived but came back with more determination to destroy the market. The indigenes of Owerri had taken the state government to court and had gotten an injunction against the demolition of their ancestral market and that should have been respected by the governor. Why will the governor be more interested in destroying a developed indigenous market while the dilapidated Hausa/Fulani market has never been marked for demolition? Isn’t the governor aware that the roads around the Ama-Hausa market are shut down and causes huge traffic whenever it is time for the Muslim prayers?

I doubt the sincerity of Rochas Okorocha in the proposed development of the town which was his core reason for the demolition of the ancestral market because there are numerous uncompleted projects littering the state that would have had a better impact on the citizens. Hundreds of uncompleted proposed General Hospitals for the state are yet to be completed for over his six years in power neither are the roads in the state anything to write home about.

It is sheer wickedness to begin the destruction of a market accommodating billion naira worth of legitimate businesses while ignoring the Ama-Hausa market which is a beehive of illicit activities and businesses such as hard drugs and money laundering. What did Rochas Okorocha expect? That the Owerri indigenes will go back home to weep after the destruction of their market while the Ama-Hausa market is busy with its businesses and protected by the Nigeria security forces is left standing? He must have lost touch with reality because the mob that went on a revenge mission to destroy the Ama-Hausa market would have led to a more damning crisis if not for the intervention of reasonable elders.

There is indication that Rochas Okorocha has relocated the Hausa/Fulani market to another area of the state while ignoring the indigenes  of the state. Without a better alternative for his own people he went ahead to destroy their source of livelihood. The state government has claimed the traders at Eke Ukwu market were given an alternative place but investigation has proven that the place provided was not in any way suitable for any form of business to take place there. The evil genius Rochas Okorocha has gone ahead to instigate a communal crises amongst indigenes of the state as he recruited and armed the militants he had offered amnesty in Ohaji community to fight against the Owerri youths that had come out in mass to protest the demolition of their ancestral market. The recruitment of the Ohaji youths in connivance with the military and police against the Owerri people is a deliberate ploy by the governor to massacre anyone that stands against the demolition of the ancestral market.

The destruction of the Eke-Ukwu ancestral market is a further show that the government is not interested in the well being of the populace but in their personal ambition and interest. This action goes on to intensify the decision of the Biafra people to boycott every election organized by the Nigeria government in Biafra land. It is obvious that the interest of those who voted them into power is never taken into consideration so there is no tangible reason to engage in any process to bring them into power.
The Ohaji militants being recruited and armed by the governor to engage their Owerri  brethren in a battle must show restrain because it is another bid to undermine the clamor for the restoration of the sovereign state of Biafra. It is understandable that the poverty in the oil-community of Ohaji was an easy tool for the recruitment of their youths by Rochas Okorocha but it will be sheer stupidity for them to continue to fight for a government that has continued to improvise them even with the large natural resources deposited in their community. As the families of the slain teenager and others affected in the demolition of the Eke-Ukwu ancestral market continues to lament their loss, Governor Rochas Okorocha should know the polity is heated up in the country and must make amends immediately. The continuous use of soldiers to harass indigenes must stop as there are no martial laws in place and every loss must be compensated in fullest.
 Edited by Chima Onyekachi 
Published /by : Anyi Kings 
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