The Chairman, Port Harcourt City Local Government Area, Mr Victor Ihunwo, says his administration is determined to clamp down on street trading in the metropolis.
Ihunwo who stated this on Friday in Port Harcourt, said the measure was to restore the Rivers capital to its former status of “Garden City.”
He lamented that indiscriminate street trading had continuously defaced major areas in the state capital despite government’s effort to ensure sanity.
“Past administrations did try to stop street trading yet to no avail, but by the special grace of God, we will achieve it in this present administration led by Gov. Nyesom Wike.
“We have made positive achievements in the Mike 3 and Bishop areas; these are major business areas known in the past for street trading and indiscriminate traffic congestion within the metropolis.
“As long as we are determined, we shall extend this gesture to other parts of Port Harcourt till the “Garden City” status is finally restored.
“Port Harcourt is a cosmopolitan city, so this administration has taken into consideration the huge demand for a world class market that will drive small and medium economy in the state.
“We actually allowed some traders to encroach on the busy Education Bus Stop in Mile 1 which is also a major business hub in Port Harcourt city.
“This is because the state government has yet to conclude work on the second phase of the Mile 1 Market project,” he said.
Phase one of the world class Mile 1 market project initiated by Gov. Celestine Omehia’s administration, was inaugurated by the past administration of Gov. Rotimi Amaechi.
The present government had in the past few years been executing the second phase of the market which is almost at its completion stage.
“This administration, I think, by God’s grace, will commission the second phase of the market in a month’s time and I believe that once it is commissioned every trader will be entitled to a shop there.
“The market is large enough to accommodate all the traders doing business in the area.
“As soon as we commission the second phase, we shall indeed ensure that we sanitise and restore beauty to the Mile1 business area of the city,” he said.
Ihunwo said that he would continue to support the state government’s initiatives targeted at ending street trading and indiscriminate traffic congestion by traders.