Rubble from the ongoing project site at Ariaria International market, Aba in Abia State, has collapsed on scavengers who went on illegal demolition of a structure in the A Line section of the market.
In a press release issued by the Chairman, Media Sub-Committee, Project Implementation and Monitoring Committee on the Rebuilding of Ariaria International Market, Ugochukwu Alaribe, said some scavengers who went on illegal demolition of a structure in the A Line section of the market were trapped and injured as the already compromised building collapsed on them.
According to the release, the developers who were not on duty at the time of the unfortunate incident, had cordoned off the project site, but the scavengers defiled the cordon, gained access to the site and started demolishing what was left of the buildings, while searching for disused steel, wire and other materials to cart away.
“While the trapped scavengers have since been rescued and are now receiving medical attention, we are glad to announce that no life was lost in the incident”, the release stated.
The release further stated that government warns unauthorised persons at the Ariaria International market project site, especially scavengers and other youths who engage in the obstructing and excavating of machines at the site, while searching for disused iron and other materials, while others break into shops and loot goods stored in them by traders to desist forthwith or face the full weight of the law.
“Just last week, fragments from the market demolition also fell on some scavengers who sustained severe injuries as they went in search of disused materials in the active site.
“Once again, the committee advises parents to warn their children to keep off the project site, as security agents have been placed on red alert to arrest and prosecute defaulters.”
Recall that the committee had warned that the daily upsurge in the number of scavengers in the area is not only delaying the efforts of the developers to meet up with the December deadline set by Governor Okezie Ikpeazu to deliver a modern market and hand over shops to all allottees, but that it also poses great danger to the scavengers and other unauthorised persons.