Ose-Okwodu is one of the 32 markets whose leaders Chukwuma Soludo, the governor of Anambra state, recently fired and replaced with caretaker committees.
According to Anaedoonline.ng, the conflict is between Chief Ikechukwu Umeanozie, the new caretaker committee chairman of the market, and Chief Okechukwu Chukwuemeka, his vice. Also involved is Chief Anthony Onwuetiaka, the previous chairman.
Umeanozie claimed that the two are disguising themselves as union leaders (zones 4 and 1, respectively), even after their respective terms as heads of those unions had expired, in an effort to obstruct his administration by stirring some traders against his office.
“I constituted caretaker committee chairmen to replace Okechukwu Chukwuemeka in zone 4 and Anthony Onwuetiaka in zone 1 because their tenures have elapsed. Members of the zones wrote petitions against them and I moved on to forestall possible crisis. We also need government approval to get Onwuetiaka to account for the N2,400 sanitation levies he collected from traders,” he added.
However, Hon. Anthony Onwuetiaka, the previous chairman of Ose-Okwodu market, refuted the accusations and said he had been paying the government the sanitation fees he collected from traders as directed.
He also argued that his successor, the new caretaker chairman, lacked the authority granted to him and other members of the zone (union) they were still in charge of, in accordance with the constitution. He pleaded with governor Soludo to appoint a replacement in order to avoid a potential breakdown in law and order.
For his part, Chief Okechukwu Chukwuemeka urged Governor Soludo to summon Umeanozie to order because, in his words, Umeanozie ignores other committee members and also employs taskforce and security to intimidate rival voices in the marketplace while claiming that his tenure in Zone 4 was still in effect.
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