As the shutdown order on markets across the state subsists, Anambra State Government has commenced the fumigation of major markets in the state.
The exercise which is in line with the detection, prevention and protection plan of the State COVID-19 Action Committee, started Tuesday with the Onitsha Main Market, will continue until all the major markets are covered.
Last week in a statewide broadcast on the COVID-19 pandemic, the State Governor, Willie Obiano had announced that 63 markets will be fumigated as part of measures to prevent the spread of the dreaded virus in the state.
Flagging off the exercise on behalf of Governor Obiano, the State Commissioner for Health, Dr Vincent Okpala confirmed that the exercise will prevent the spread of Coronavirus and tackle rodents and germs responsible for Lassa fever and other diseases as well.
He said that the fumigation will be done with diluted sodium hypochloride in line with the provisions of the World Health Organization and noted that the market is closed in accordance with government directives to prevent the spread of the virus and to accommodate the fumigation exercise.
“The measure is not only targeted to aid the fight against Coronavirus but also eradicate disease-spreading germs and rodents in the markets. We implore our traders to understand that the government has taken the decision to shut down the markets in their best interest. What is happening now is very serious and we are more concerned with ensuring that this disease does not enter the state,” Okpala explained.
The state Commissioner of trade and commerce, Uchenna Okafor thanked people of the state especially the market leaders and traders for cooperating with the government.
“The level of compliance to government directives is commendable. Anambra State Government is leading the battle against Coronavirus from the front. The closure of markets, schools and other public places in the state were all aimed at preventing the spread of the virus and we thank our people for their understanding,” Okafor said.
The Commissioner also noted that the choice of the main market, Onitsha is significant as it serves as a commercial hub for the west and central Africa, is the largest market in the zone.
On his part, Chief Ik Ekwegbalu, President General of Anambra State Markets Amalgamated Traders Association (ASMATA) commended the state government for fumigating the markets.
Chief Ekwegbalu also thanked traders for heeding government’s instructions stating that Anambra will win the battle against Coronavirus.