Twenty shops and goods worth N10 million were destroyed by fire on Friday morning at the Kuje Market in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
Mr Duda Ismahil, the Vice-Chairman, Kuje Area Council, told Newsverge that the incident was a disaster and economic loss to the traders.
He said that the incident was worrisome and happened when the country was facing economic hardship.
“It is sad news, because goods worth millions of naira were lost to the fire and I appeal to the affected traders to remain calm, as proper investigation would be carried out.
“It is very unfortunate that we are witnessing this fire incident at hard times, and we thank God that no life was lost in the inferno.
“The fire incident came as a surprise to everybody; and the Area Council sympathises with the affected traders,’’ the council official said.
Ismahil said, however, that plans were underway to complete the Kuje modern Market project.
He said the council would meet with the market authorities and the security agencies, to set up a committee to prevent a recurrence of such incident.
The Chairman, Kuje Traders Association, Alhaji Musa Umar, sympathised with the affected traders, adding that adequate measures would be taken to prevent such incident in future.
Musa said that the cause of the fire was yet to be known, noting that investigations were underway to ascertain the cause of the inferno.
“I sympathise with the affected traders because it is not easy to lose goods worth millions of naira at a time of economic hardship in the country.
“We were, however, able to put out the fire with the help of the Kuje Fire Service Division and other security personnel,” he said.
Mr Emeka Eze, a shop owner, whose goods were lost in the fire, described the situation as worrisome and a setback to his business.
Eze said there were speculations that the fire was caused by a faulty generator left behind in one of the shops last night.
“The new sewing and designing machines I bought recently with a loan from the cooperative society have been destroyed by the fire.
“Cloths worth N250, 000 belonging to customers have also been destroyed by the fire, and I don’t know where to start from,’’ Eze said.