There is need to curb illegal trading–Obi of Onitsha speaks on fire in domain

Obi of Onitsha, Igwe Achebe

By Sunny A. David

Igwe Alfred Nnemka Achebe, the Obi of Onitsha, says there is need to curb illegal trading in Onitsha.

The monarch, said this while reacting in a statement issued and signed by him to the two fire incidents inOnitsha within three days.

Five persons died in the inferno caused by the explosion of a petrol tanker while more than 500 shops were reportedly razed and goods worth millions of naira destroyed in the first incident which happened on Wednesday.

On Friday, another truck exploded in the city, destroying at least 22 vehiculs.

In proffering solutions against recurrence of fire outbreaks, Igwe Achebe said there is a need to ease traffic and enforce planning regulations.

“During my annual Ofala address to the community, I spoke about the pressures of urbanization and unbridled commercialization in the city, the need to debottleneck the road traffic conundrum in the city, and the enforcement of planning regulations to curb illegal roadside trading that impede both vehicular and human movement.

“I also spoke about the related issue of poor environmental sanitation that is choking the metropolitan city with garbage.

“An adequate fire service is a sine qua non for a bustling metropolitan city of Onitsha as well as other major towns in Anambra State,” he stated.

Igwe Achebe thanked President Muhammadu Buhari, Chief Willie Obiano, Governor of Anambra State, and other traditional rulers for expressing solidarity and sympathy.

“We thank Governor Obiano, for acting immediately to set up a panel of enquiry into the fire incident and pray that the remit of the panel should go beyond this specific event to address the fundamental causes of these disasters, and a holistic plan for a broad-based tackling of the challenges of urbanization and commercialization which contribute to environmental pollution and degradation,” the monarch stressed.