Youths of Owerri are furious over the planned relocation of the ancestral Eke Ukwu Owere market.
Governor Rochas Okorocha had issued a 48 hours ultimatum to traders of the market to vacate the market located in the heart of the city.
On Thursday night, some youths gathered to keep vigil at the market vowing to lay down their lives of the State Government carry out the threat. They also lot bonfires vowing to oppose the plan. Some women suspected to be traders of the market later joined the protest.
Some of them spent the night at the market and lit bonfires to express their opposition to the plan. They have continued do so as at Friday night as they insist that the market will not be moved.
Some of them who spoke on condition of anonymity said the Eke Ukwu market is their ancestral market and the only uniting identity of Owere people after the balkanization of the Ezeship stool two years ago by the same government.
Our reporter who has been monitoring the situation also sighted some youths protesting on the streets of Owerri.They also carried a coffin to buttress their displeasure to relocate the market.
Some concerned leaders o Owere Nchi Ise who spoke to our reporter expressed disappointment with the insistence of the government to move away the market despite several protests and appeals to the state government to rescind its decision.
The Imo State government as part of its urban renewal programme had said the relocation of the market is paramount as it is commiteed to restore the glory of Owerri.