A section of the Akure central market, located close to the palace of the Deji of Akure was, on Thursday, gutted by fire.
The inferno, which started in the early hours of the day, affected no fewer than 100 shops and rendered many properties and materials worth millions of Naira damaged.
Traders at the market were counting their losses when our Correspondent visited the scene.
They appealed to authorities of Akure South Local Government Area and the state government to come to their assistance.
It was learnt that the fire incident was caused by an electric surge which occurred in one of the shops in the night and efforts to stop the fire did not yield any positive results until it affected other shops around it.
One of the shop owners, Mr. Ojo Owoeye, who claimed to have lost goods worth over N3 million, said he received a call in the night that his shop was burning and immediately rushed to the place, only to see the shop already razed.
He said men of the Ondo State Fire Service did not respond timely to the distress calls put across to them till the shops were completely razed.
“For over three hours, men of the state fire service could not get to the scene of the fire incident. It was officials of the Airport Fire Brigade that eventually came to our rescue, otherwise the inferno would have extended to the palace of the Deji of Akure,” he stated.
Owoeye informed that some shop owners whose shops were razed by the inferno are already in the hospital receiving medical treatment following injuries they sustained while trying to put off the fire.
He called on the management of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and he state government to assist the victims of the fire disaster for their business to come back to life.