The Otukpo main market in Benue state has been gutted by an early morning fire which destroyed goods worth millions of Naira.
Daily Trust gathered that the fire began at about 5:00am on Monday and raged until 7:00am when it was brought under control by fire-fighters.
A trader in the market, Oine Jude, whose shop was also affected, said the fire-fighters arrived early but couldn’t make headway into the market on time due to poor access road.
Jude said gaining entry into the market to quench the fire was a hurricane task for the fire-fighting trucks, alleging further that hoodlums took advantage of the situation and looted some shops.
She claimed that her shop stock with textile materials was badly affected and now bringing her to a zero level.
The Chairman of Otukpo LGA, George Alli, told newsmen in Makurdi by telephone that the situation was quickly brought under control by the timely intervention of the Federal Fire Service stationed in Otukpo town.
Alli said his team has so far counted about 350 shops which were completely razed down in the inferno.
He noted that the fire-fighting trucks arrived the scene on time but that there were no roads to immediately tackle the inferno, stressing the need for the expansion of the 50-year-old market or relocation to safer vicinity.
Meanwhile, Governor Samuel Ortom, said he received the sad news of the fire which gutted the Otukpo main market in the early hours of Monday.
Ortom further sympathised with shop owners and all traders whose investments were affected by the fire as he appreciated God that no life was lost.
The governor, who spoke through his Chief Press Secretary, Terver Akase, said he will personally visit the market on Tuesday to ascertain the level of damage caused by the inferno.