Traders, Widows In Sapele Protest Against Okowa

Ifeanyi OkowaWidows and traders in Sapele, Delta State on Friday took to the streets in peaceful protest against Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, over the state government order revoking stalls allotted to them by the last administration in the state.

The women, who condemned the government’s decision, claimed that they were allotted the stalls after they made full payment for them and completed all necessary formalities for ownership.

The placard-wielding protesters, who were led by Mrs Cecelia Eregare and Mr. Happy Atsegor, said, “It is wickedness for the governor that was voted into power by the people to turn around and throw us into the cold street after paying for our stalls”.

They lamented that they had been on the issue since 2006 when fire gutted the market and they were ordered to vacate their shops for the market to be rebuilt.

Eregare recalled that they were re-allotted the stalls in early 2014 after they completed payment and paper works with the government.

“We applied for the shops; we bought forms, completed and returned them as well as made the requirement payment before we were given the shop. So it is surprising that the new governor is giving us notice to quit”, Mr Atsegor added.

The widows and traders, who carried several placards denouncing the government’s action, vowed to resist the quit order just as they wondered why there was so much haste to give them quit notice despite a pending court case over the issue.