Traders have been counting their losses after fire gutted a plank market in the Sango Ota area of Ogun State on Thursday, the PUNCH Metro reports.
The traders, while lamenting over development, said property worth millions of naira were burnt to ashes when fire razed the market.
An eyewitness, Tobias Imala, said the cause of the fire which started around 10am was yet to be ascertained as of the time this report was filed.
Imala said, “This morning when I got to the office, I just saw smoke oozing out from the sawmill beside the UBA building. About three stores were burnt as of then and it was spreading to other shops.
“Everybody was packing out their goods but thank God that men of the Ogun State Fire Service were already there.”
A plank seller, identified simply as Mrs Olawale, said most of the shop owners were not around when the fire began.
Olawale said, “My shop was not affected but it happened opposite my shop. It affected four to five shops here. Nobody can say how the fire happened.
“Most of us were not at the shops when it started because of environmental day activities taking place today. The fire started from a foam shop.
“Immediately one of us noticed the fire, they all rushed to the Indomie company. It was the Indomie Fire Service that came to put out the fire before the state fire service arrived. We don’t know the cause of the fire.”
Another trader, Deborah Oyeleye, said the fire burnt all the planks in her shop, adding that she lost goods valued at N400,000.
“My shop was affected and all my planks were burnt. The fire started from a foam shop beside my shop and it razed my shops and several other shops.
“My goods that were burnt were valued at ₦400,000. I have nothing remaining in the shop,” Oyeleye said.
Pictures and videos obtained from the scene showed traders rushing to pack out their goods when the fire was razing shops in the market.
The Commander of the Indomie Fire Service, Bayo Ogundele, said no fewer than 12 shops were consumed by the fire.
Ogundele said, “We tried to interview one or two persons on the cause but people didn’t want to talk. But what we heard was that a lady was sweeping and all of a sudden, the fire was discovered somewhere. About 12 shops have been burnt from the information reaching me.”
Contacted, the Director, State Fire Service, Adefala Fatai, said, “The fire has been put out by the fire service.”