Yuletide: Obaseki celebrates Edo market women


…20,000 Edo market women to benefit from Trader-moni

…18 markets to be fitted with toilets, water facilities 

The Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has celebrated with market women in Edo State in the spirit of the Yuletide season, thanking them for their support for the state government and his policies.

The governor expressed his appreciation during an end-of-the-year party organised by the Edo State Market Women Association in Benin City, on Wednesday, December 12, 2018.

He said, “I don’t know where to start because our mothers, our aunts, all of you have been my backbone. You are our greatest supporters. You are the ones on the streets and in markets who come to tell us daily what is going on. You are the ones who come to advise us in government on what to do. Without you, we will not succeed.

“We are here to thank you all. From Aduwawa Market in Benin to markets in Akoko-Edo, Esan land and Orhionmwon, thank you for supporting our government. We appreciate all of you. We know your challenges.

“You cried to us about the activities of touts, which was not good for our state, and asked us to assist you. That was what made us ban the activities of touts from our roads and in markets. By God’s grace, touts will not return to Edo State again.”

He continued, “You told us how teachers don’t attend classes and how our children don’t learn in schools, that we should assist you. That is why we implemented the Edo Basic Education Transformation (EdoBEST) programme.

“Thank God, one of you is on the State Universal Education Board (SUBEB), Mrs. Ighodalo. Help me express my appreciation to her. Do you know what SUBEB is doing? They are in all our schools, training our teachers to teach our children. All of you who have children in primary schools should go to the schools and see what we are trying to do for the children to learn.”

Obaseki noted, “It is you who told us that roads are not good and the quality of roads we need to construct, that made us reconstruct the roads in Uselu in Benin. Moving from Ugbor to Ugbowo now doesn’t take you more than 30 minutes. We still have many projects to carry out in Edo State. We are just starting. We know that some things are still hard but by God’s grace and with the help of the Federal Government, we are investing in agriculture.”

He said, “From 2019, when we will be preparing for Christmas, the Food and Agric Fair will have food everywhere because we are assisting farmers with funds to grow crops.

Noting that the state government has intensified efforts at road construction, he said “We know we don’t have enough roads, we will construct more roads. Today, during our EXCO meeting, we awarded the largest road contract in the history of Edo State, from Upper Sokponba to Abraka has been awarded, totalling 106km of road. All of you in Orhionmwon and other areas in that axis will have road to bring your food to the city.”

On construction of toilets and water facilities, Obaseki said, “Through the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) programme, we will commence the construction of toilets and water facilities in 18 markets in Oredo, Egor and Ikpoba-Okha local government areas. Before January, all the toilets in these markets will be constructed with water facilities.”

On the provision of smart off-grid electricity to the markets, he said, “In 2019, all the markets across Edo State will have functioning toilets and water facilities. Solar power will be provided in all the markets in the state, just like the one we have in Edaeken Market commissioned by the Vice President. This will assist you to reduce the cost of running generator sets.”

He announced that 20,000 traders in the state will benefit from the Trader-moni loans, noting, “the Vice President has asked me to give 20,000 traders the Trader-moni loan in Edo State. In the next one month, people will go around markets to collect names and phone numbers of traders. They will give you the loans for your trade.”

Earlier, President of the Edo Market Women Association, Mrs. Blacky Omoregie, said market women have fared well under Governor Obaseki’s administration owing to the various policies, which have improved their ease of doing businesses.

She commended the governor for the ongoing reforms in all sectors of the state’s economy, especially the road infrastructure, sports, education and health care.