Traders at the popular furniture market in Biogbolo, a suburb of Yenagoa metropolis, Bayelsa State, have lamented their loss as fire gutted the market on Sunday.
The cause could not be ascertained last night but sources said the fire was allegedly ignited by arsonists over failure to pay some youths ‘ground breaking money’. The fire started about 4am yesterday.
Traffic was disrupted as vehicles were forced to use one side of the dual-carriage way.
Some of the affected traders accused some youths of setting the fire since they had earlier threatened to burn the market if certain demands from them were not met.
Another trader said some youths threatened to burn the market if the traders failed to pay ‘matching ground’ money. “I saw five boys setting the place on fire. I struggled to secure some of my furniture but I couldn’t because the fire was severe,” he said.
Chairman of the Yenagoa City Council Nimizuoa Uroupaye sympathised with the victims. He urged them not to be afraid, and promised that the culprits would be brought to book.
He also called an emergency meeting between the leadership of Biogbolo community and the traders.
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