By; FUNMI ADERINTO, Kaduna
Governor Nasir el-Rufai has promised that all shop owners will be given the right of first refusal when the new Kaduna markets are completed and no trader will be short changed in the re-distribution of shops.
The Governor who was responding to a question from a caller during the media chat at the weekend, reiterated that the data of all shop owners is being captured.
el-Rufai also promised that no government official or civil servant will be allocated a shop in any of the markets that are being rebuilt.
The Governor however, said that the traders were just tenants in the market which belong to the Government, dispelling the misconception that the shops belonged to the traders.
el-Rufai pointed out that the fact that the original allotees have sub-leased or even sold the shops to third parties does not make the beneficiaries the owners of those shops.
The Governor further argued that the markets should be rebuilt, ‘’ because the population that they were initially meant to cater for, has grown over the years. Also, the facilities are old and there is need to modernise them.’’
According to him, Kasuwar Barci in Tudun Wada area of Kaduna South Local Government, Kasuwan Magani in Kajuru Local Government, Kawo market in Kaduna North, as well as Sabon Gari market in Zaria, will all be rebuilt and fitted with modern facilities.
The Governor also said that temporary markets have been provided for the traders who will be affected by the markets re-development projects, adding that they will do business there until the new markets are ready for use.
el-Rufai who said that the projects will be handled by the Kaduna Markets Development and Management Company (KMDMC) through Public Private Partnership, also said that they have addressed the concerns of small traders who may not have money to re-purchase their shops upon completion.
“Government has already entered a mortgage arrangement with some banks, whereby they will give the traders money to purchase the shops, while the banks will hold onto the Certificates of Occupancies until their mortgages are liquidated,” he added.
According to him, the re-payment plan is flexible as it will take five years to liquidate the mortgage.
‘’The principle is that instead of paying monthly rents, the shop owners will now pay these monies to the bank in order to offset the mortgage,’’ he explained.
The Governor who decried the situation whereby people are calling Government officials all sorts of names because of the market re-development project, said that posterity will judge his administration positively for embarking on the project.