GOODS worth millions of naira have been destroyed after the Terminus Main Market in Jos, Plateau State, was razed down by fire in the wee hours of Saturday, the third time a similar incident will be occurring in the market in less than 2 decades.
The Terminus Market had experienced fire outbreaks in 2001 and more recently in 2016.
Confirming the incident, Matthias Tyopev, spokesman of the Plateau State police command, told newsmen that the fire incidence was severe.
“Yes, there was a fire incident at the popular Terminus Market in Jos. Goods and warehouses were destroyed,” Tyopev was quoted as saying.
“The Plateau State Commissioner of Police and chairman of Jos North Local Government Area was there to ascertain the level of damage and you will get the details later.
“For now, we can’t estimate the total amount lost in the fire because so many people were involved; the money lost is unquantifiable because the fire incident was very severe.”
Adie Undie, the state’s Commissioner of Police, latter told journalists that the fire, whose cause is still unknown, began at half past one in the night. He added that it was difficult for the fire service to access the market initially, but that policemen were on hand to keep hoodlums from taking advantage of the situation and burgling people’s shops.
“This incident happened around 1:30.a.m and our men and that of the Department of Fire Service responded promptly,” Undie said.
“The nature of the market really hindered the men of the fire service from accessing it with ease, but they did their best.
“My officers were able to cordon off the arena and ensure hoodlums didn’t take undue advantage of the situation to loot.”
Undie said police officers would remain at the scene to ensure that law and order is maintained.
Abdulrahman Yusuf, Chairman of the Plateau State Traders’ Association, told reporters that more than 200 shops were destroyed in the fire and goods worth several millions lost. Yusuf called on the state and federal government to come to their assistance.