The Akwa Ibom state government said it has concluded plans to ban street hawking and illigal markets in the Uyo capital city.
It said the move was to promote a cleaner, hygienic and well beautified environment befitting for a capital city.
This was contained in a statement tagged ‘Operation Zero Tolerance’ signed by the Commissioner for Environment and Natural Resources, Mr Charles Udoh, and obtained by Blueprint in Uyo.
He said the indiscriminate display of goods on road walkways has hampered the smooth movements of both vehicles and pedestrians thereby causing unnecessary traffic.
Udoh, who said the situation had exposed both the traders and general public to road hazard, ordered all street traders and hawkers around the plaza area, airport road, Aka – Etinan junction and other highbrow areas to relocate to designated trading places on or before February 1, 2021.
He said the press release was the last warning sequence to the enforcement of the order by the enforcement team of the Ministry of Environment.
The statement reads, “In line with Akwa Ibom State Government’s commitment to promoting a cleaner, hygienic and aesthetically resplendent environment, the Ministry of Environment is launching ‘Operation Zero Tolerance’ to street trading and illegal markets in the Uyo Capital City (UCC).
“The eradication of street trading in the UCC is a key component of the recently approved Environmental Beautification Policy for the UCC.
“The increasing wave of illegal activities of street traders, indiscriminate display of goods on road setbacks, walkways, and hawking on major roads; particularly around the Plaza Area, Wellington Bassey Road, Airport Road, Aka-Etinan Road junction and other highbrow areas in the metropolis has become a major cause for concern. These activities impede free flow of traffic as well as expose traders and the general public to road hazards.
“Accordingly, all street traders, hawkers and operators of illegal markets around the plaza area, airport road, Aka – Etinan junction and other highbrow areas are advised to relocate to designated trading places on or before February 01, 2021 or be prepared to face the wrath of the law.
“This announcement therefore serves as the last warning prelude to the enforcement of this order by the Enforcement Team of the Ministry of Environment.
“The current administration is committed to fast tracking the vision of sustaining our state as an environmental friendly and the preferred destination for tourists and investors.
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“A beautiful environment starts with you. Let’s do it together!
“For further clarification, please contact the Director of Public Education and Awareness in the Ministry of Environment.”