AKURE MARKET UNDER THREAT OF TIMBER LORRY ACCIDENTS

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BY: OYE AGUNBIADE

The citing of a community market or a cluster of trading outlets attracts people for commercial activities and it is regarded as one of the indices of economic development in any given area.

One of such is Odundun Market, a daily and every five day bush market located on Adebowale T. Junction along ondo road in akure, the Ondo state capital.

Odundun market

Residents attested to the level of development the market had brought to the community as it is the fastest growing community along Ondo road in Akure.

Due to the location of Odundun market, beside a steepy road, traders and residents have come under the siege of timber lorries and other heavy duty vehicles plying the hilly side of the market thereby frequently crashing into the market, injuring people and destroying goods.

The market therefore is presently under threat just as traders, residents and motorists plying the axis are now calling on government to come to their aid.

The market women, and chairman, Landlord Association of the community Mr Lanre Oluwateru who all spoke with Radio Nigeria expressed worries over the recurring accidents.

The women who described the sight of heavily loaded Timber Lorries ascending the hill as the beginning of fear and race, said the existence of the market is threatened until something is done to avert the accidents.

Also lamenting, the Iyaloja, Odundun Market, Mrs Titilayo Olanireti who said vehicles and large number of goods have been destroyed due to the accidents, called on government to complete their market stalls with more shops so that traders could leave the junction for safer stalls.

Radio Nigeria gathered that many of the Timber lorries plying the axis were rickety and do experience break failure.

Reacting to this, Chairman, Timber Trade Organisation, Akure South Zone A2 Adebowale, Mr Adewole Babatunde said the steepy nature of the road was responsible for the accidents.

A community leader and retired lecturer, Mr Isaac Awodumila who wondered what Vehicle Inspection officers (VIO) are doing to allow such vehicles ply Ondo state roads, however wanted government to move the market away from the road while timber lorries should urgently be subjected to series of checks to ascertain their road worthiness.

Mr Awodumila who also noted that Adebowale community is fast growing, called on the state government to level the hilly part of the junction and create a park where commercial vehicles and motorcyclists could park, turn and attend to their passengers.

In a reaction, the Special Adviser to Ondo State Governor on Transport, Mr Tobi Ogunleye who claimed he was unaware of the frequent accidents until the prompt of Radio Nigeria however revealed government’s intention to phase out and replace the rickety timber lorries with new ones

Other residents who spoke with Radio Nigeria appealed to the government to redesign the junction and construct barricades on the road sides to prevent series of accidents mostly involving timber lorries and trucks at the T. Junction.

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