Some group of traders who plies their trade at Baleke Market in Ika South Local government area have appealed to the various government for help concerning their dilapidated roofing which they said is in total decay.
Speaking to Ika weekly on 10th February 2010 during that day’s evening rainfall, the traders lamented that after more than 30 years, the market was roofed, not other repairs have been made. One of them, Mr Gabriel Okoh averred that series of delegation have been sent to the Local government since 1999 without any resultant effect, "we have mandated different delegation to see the Ika South authorities, yet the issue remains unresolved". According to Mr Okoh, most lock-up store in the market especially those in Baleke and Akpenyi axis of the market are in disrepair, "Oftentimes, during rainfall, we re-arrange our goods to avoid it been damaged. When rainfall occurs at night, most of our wares are damaged by the rain due to the leaking roof"
Also, Madam Felicia Idemudia said that every major parts of the market needs repairs, this she said is as a result of years of neglect by those in authority. She called on the government to as a matter of urgency repair the market to suit modern standard which will be beneficial to both the government and the traders. If the market is modernized with necessary facilities like toilet, pipe borne water, police station, banks, accessible roads, e.t.c, the government will gain because prices of stores will increase and boost government revenue while traders will have better stores to display their goods".
Another respondent who pleaded anonymity told Ika weekly that her store along Baleke axis of the market together with other store in the same line needs total re-roofing. The women said that during rainy season, the stores absorbs water which also damage their properties, "Last year rainfall destroy many goods in these store due to bad roofing sheet. You know that most of the stores have asbestos roofs and due to long years of decay, the roofs need replacement.
Others who spoke on condition of anonymity insisted if the government cannot immediately renovate the roofs, the traders should be directed through government circulars to effect the renovation and the authorities will deduct the expenses from their rents, "Let them empower us to rebuild the roofs and we comply so far the monies spent will be deducted from the various rents which we paid to their coffers".
During the rainfall, Ika weekly witnessed some of the traders arranging their goods in different positions in their stores, which they said is to prevent damaging of their goods.