How Traders Lost Fortune in Balogun Market Fire
By Dipo Omoware and Samuel Victor Akpan
When disasters like the Balogun Market fire occur, it is mostly traders or house owners who suffer the most. Nigeria Info was at the scene of Tuesday’s fire disaster at the popular Balogun Market in Lagos to get a first hand feel of the damage of the inferno.
One of the victims affected by the fire who identified himself as Chibuike spoke to Nigeria Info detailing the time the incident occurred and how it affected all the traders on the street.
“The fire started around 10.15am this morning and it affected everybody in the market,” he said.
“It affected me so much, my goods, my money, my everything, I lost everything, I’m confused as I’m talking to you right now, I don’t know how where to go” said a distraught Chibuike
JUST IN: Another fire in Lagos...— Nigeria Info FM 99.3 (@NigeriainfoFM) January 29, 2020
You could literally feel the pain in Chibuike’s voice when he spoke with Nigeria Info as he found it difficult to put words together
” I’m speechless anyway, I’m speechless for me to continue this discussion it’s getting me...” he fizzled off.
Another trader, who simply identified himself as Isaac Nwabueze, also spoke to Nigeria Info correspondent Goodnews Ndukwe lamenting his loss.
“We offloaded a lot of goods yesterday (Monday). I lost a lot of goods. I don’t know how many are left now. Some are lost,” Isaac said.
Earlier, the Acting Director of the Lagos State Fire Service Margaret Adeseye urged people to stop the habit of fuelling generators while they are powered on.
UPDATE: "Crowd management is a problem... Stop refilling generators when on," Acting Dir., Lagos Fire Service, Margaret Adeseye speaks... pic.twitter.com/WMcSSeSErG— Nigeria Info FM 99.3 (@NigeriainfoFM) January 29, 2020
Speaking to correspondent Maureen Ogolor, Adeseye said: “My advice to the public is to desist from the habit of fuelling generator while at work. We got to know there was generator on while they were fuelling it. That escalated and resulted in the outbreak of the fire.”
Authorities blame the fire on the practice.
Adeseye said that crowd management was a constraint for the fire service while dealing with the fire, but she assured it has been brought under control.
“Our constraint now is this crowd management, the public are struggling with the equipment with us, that will not make the work faster but as it is we are still on ground to make sure we see the end of the fire,” She said.
UPDATE: The reason the Balogun Market fire on Tuesday spread has to do with generators. Read this to find out more...https://t.co/pkEcvyDCGZ— Nigeria Info FM 99.3 (@NigeriainfoFM) January 29, 2020
Adeseye further revealed that one of the buildings that was razed has collapsed and that another could also go down.
The Federal Fire Service, the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA) and other emergency units are on the site of the inferno.
Additional report by Maureen Ogolor & Goodnews Ndukwe