The fire, which started around 10.32am, destroyed two warehouses where provisions were kept and another shop said to be housing books.
Advocate gathered that the fire was caused by a power surge in one of the shops when the Benin Electricity Distribution Company, BEDC, suddenly brought power.
One of the women who claim to be at the scene when the fire broke out told Advocate “the inferno then gradually spread to other part of the shops before fire fighters camein.
She stated, “I was inside the market when the fire started around 10.32am. We suddenly heard people shouting fire fire when we got to the scene of the incident, we found out that the fire was as a result of a power surge when BEDC brought light. We had to reach the market management committee to call the fighters.
“At first, it was just one warehouse that was burning then it spread to other ones before firefighters came”
One of the affected traders, Mrs FejIro Onosiagbe, pleaded with the government to come to his aid, adding that her business meant tgd whole life to her.
“I am one of the owners of the affected warehouse. I was away when my girls called me that the warehouse was burning so I ran down, only to discover that my things were on fire. All my life is here, the government should come to our aid o ” she cried.
Comrade Benson Okorodudu, a member of the market committee who also spoke on the incident narrated how at first the terrain were not accessible for fire trucks and the role traders played to evacuate some wares “before the fire service trucks came, some of them tried to do the best they can and with the arrival of fire trucks from Seplat and the state fire service, the inferno was brought under control”
He said, though, the cost of the goods destroyed cannot be immediately ascertain, a committee will be put in place to do that and prevent a future occurrence.
Commenting on the issue, the chairman of Sapele Local Government area, Hon Eugene Inoaghan commended the prompt response of the fire service, adding traders should be safety conscious when they handle electrical appliances, he however promised to provide assistance to the affected shop owners to cushion the effect of the loss.