The leader of markets in Lagos, Folashade Tinubu-Ojo, has said that the popular Oyingbo Market in Lagos was shut down due to its deplorable state and not due to traders’ failure to pay her N5 million bribe.
Traders at the market on Wednesday told Peoples Gazette that Mrs Tinubu-Ojo has refused to reopen the market shut two weeks ago because they could not raise the amount she demanded.
But Mrs Tinubu-Ojo refuted the allegation at a media briefing insisting that the market was closed because of its poor sanitation.
“The Mainland Local Government Chairman, Honourable Omolola Essien had earlier called me to close down the Oyingbo market because it was extremely dirty.
“Also, the Ministry of Environment had initially done so earlier in the year for the same reason before it was reopened.
“The Governor of Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, had also visited the market and thereafter, sent a letter to that effect.
“The traders were then given time to do the needful,” she explained.
Mrs Tinubu-Ojo regretted that the market which was constructed less than 10 years ago was now in bad shape.
“I visited the market on Thursday last week and instructed them not to open the market the next day and that they should also move their goods out of the market, with a promise that I will be there on Friday to ensure proper sanitation.
“I was there as said, on Friday and ordered the traders to pack their stuff out of the market while it was properly cleaned on Friday and Saturday.
“I sent delegates to check on Tuesday if thorough sanitation had been done as instructed,” she said.
Mrs Tinubu-Ojo said that the traders were given 24 hours prior notice, adding that the Ministry of Environment had earlier shut the market without prior notice, for months.
“We can’t continue to celebrate dirt. I stood at the gate and asked them to move their perishables before it was closed,” she said.
Mrs Tinubu-Ojo, however, appealed to the traders to ensure proper sanitation as it is being preached weekly.
She urged traders to always keep their environment clean.