No fewer than 23 shops were razed down and goods worth millions of naira damaged in an early morning inferno that reportedly wreaked havoc yesterday at Owode Market, Offa, Kwara State.
A witness account said the fire started around 1a.m and before sympathizers could mobilise the fire service, several shops had been razed.
Head, Media and Publicity of the Kwara Fire Service, Hassan Hakeem Adekunle, said that though the intelligence unit of the Fire Service is working to know the immediate and remote cause of the fire, he suspected that electric spark might have caused the fire.
“If not because of the quick intervention of the fire brigade, the disaster would have been a great one. Though about 23 shops were affected due to the little delay in calling fire brigade.”
“The cause of the inferno was suspected to be an electric spark, even though some intelligent teams of State Fire Service are still working on that to ascertain the actual cause of the “outbreak.”
The Offa Descendants’ Union (ODU), through its National Public Relations officer, Maruf Olakekan Ajenifuja said it received the news of the inferno with sadness.
The extent of the inferno, which allegedly occurred at a location close to Alhaji Sanni Abba House, is yet to be ascertained but O.D.U. has deployed relevant officials to the scene of the fire outbreak for more details.
In another development, Gusau Local Government Secretariat in Gusau, the Zamfara State capital, was also gutted, yesterday.
The council’s secretary, Nura Musa Gusau, said the fire started around noon when workers were busy in their various departments.
He said the outbreak was caused by electrical fault following the supply of high voltage from PHCN which led to the sparking of electrical wires in the complex.
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The council scribe said many offices were torched by the raging fire including the office of the Vice Chairman, Director of Agriculture, NOA and Immigration offices in the Secretariat.
He added that, although no life was lost, but property worth millions of naira was ravaged by the inferno.
According to eye witnesses, it took the quick intervention of workers of the local government and personnel of the State Fire Service about two hours before the fire was brought under control.
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