The Governor, Ikpeazu, gave the warning in a statement on Tuesday while reacting to reports that some traders at Ngwa Road were planning a protest following the phased reconstruction of the market by the state.
He also directed security agents, task force teams of ASEPA, TIMAAS and Aba South LGA to remove any article of trade or wares wrongly displayed along the reconstruction site of Ngwa Road.
“The attention of Abia State Government has been drawn to an orchestrated protest by some unscrupulous individuals masquerading as traders at Ngwa Road Market in Aba, who have apparently been benefitting from the age-long rot in some of our markets and have become uncomfortable with the planned reorganization and phased reconstruction of the market to serve our people better.
“This announcement serves as a warning to such individuals that any further disruption of the peace and order of the state will not only lead to the immediate and total closure of the market till further notice, individuals responsible for the disruption will also be visited with the full wrath of the law.
“Governor Okezie Ikpeazu has directed the approved developers, Messrs Peacock Urban Regeneration Limited, to ensure strict compliance with the agreed timelines and phasing of the work to avoid undue hardship to our people.
“Traders currently within Line 1-10 of the market are therefore advised to immediately move to alternative shops provided at Good Morning market as a temporary measure so as to enable reconstruction work to commence today unencumbered while others from Line 11 should maintain their spaces in the market for now until otherwise directed.
“In addition to the above, Government has directed security agents, task force teams of ASEPA, TIMAAS and Aba South LGA to remove any article of trade or wares wrongly displayed along the reconstruction site of Ngwa road and sanction anyone found culpable under the relevant laws of the state and Nigeria.
“While we recognize that some of our traders might suffer temporary disruptions as a result of our focused urban renewal drive, we are guided by the fact that the expected benefits will far outweigh the discomforts of today.
“We, therefore, call on our people to join hands with the government and her agents to ensure a better life for our people,” the statement said.