By Phil Okose, Onitsha
Traders in Ogbaru Relief, (Main) Market in Ogbaru Local Government Area of Anambra State who deal in adulterated or in fake goods risk voluntary jail term, President-General of the market, Chief Ndubisi Ochiogu has warned.
Ochiogu gave the to current and intending fake goods producers in the market at the weekend, while advising them to steer clear of the market in their own best interest.
Fielding questions from newsmen in his office, the market leader added that the market and its environs were no longer a safe haven for dealers of unlawful products and vowed to employ all legal means to deal with any fake producer of goods who dared to trade in the market.
Chief Ochiogu regretted the havoc that the activities of the said miscreants had caused members of the public, stressing that many people died or had serious health problems as a result of fake and adulterated products.
He added that many uncommon illnesses have been traced to the consumption of uncertified or adulterated products, and warned further that anyone caught faking any products in the market would have themselves to blame.
He therefore sternly warned companies and individuals who were in the practice of adulterating goods in the area to vacate the market and relocate elsewhere in their own interests.
The market leader also condemned the collection of any form of revenue from companies he alleged to fake and adulterated goods, declaring that his administration would exercise zero tolerance for illegal revenue collection from individuals and bodies dealing on illegality.
He further explained that since he assumed office, issues of stealing and breaking of shops at night had become a thing of the past.
He recalled that one security man was recently caught stealing and that the man had long been handed over to the police for necessary action.
Ochogu further expressed the readiness of his team to comply with directives of the Anambra State Government for the good of the traders and the poor masses.
He however called on the state government to rehabilitate all roads leading to various markets in the state now that traders in the market have started opening the market on Mondays.
He enjoined customers coming from various states to ignore fake and negative news about opening of markets on Mondays, describing such as the handiwork of those who he said were pressing for the relocation of the market to neighbouring states.
Secretary of the market, Mr Uchenna Wisdom Obasi, also said that the executive was working round the clock to ensure proper sanitization of the market while pledging their commitment to giving no breathing space to those he referred to as saboteurs.
Obasi noted that there has been absolute peace in the market since the inception of the present administration, pointing out that the usual story of bribery, stealing, intimidation and illegal revenue collection no longer exist.
He consequently implored traders in the market to throw their support behind Ochiogu and his team, describing him as a disciplined and quintessential gentleman to the core.