As part of efforts to stem imminent outbreaks and spread of the novel coronavirus, the Techiman Municipal Assembly in the Bono East Region has resolved to create eleven temporary satellite market centres to ease congestion at the city’s main trading centre.
The creation of satellite market centres will be preceded by a week-long closure of the main Techiman market centre, which is one of the largest in the country and attracts traders from across the sub-region. The closure takes effect from Wednesday, April 22 to April 29.
The Techiman Municipal Chief Executive, John Donyina, who disclosed this to B&FT said: “The move is a painful but necessary precautionary measure to safeguard the lives of thousands of people who do business at the Techiman Market on daily basis. Traders among others will have to forgo their daily sales; likewise, the Assembly will also lose huge revenue as the market remains the major source of internally generated funds for the Assembly.
“We have communicated the decision to leadership of the traders at the market. The Assembly has secured places like school parks in Techiman to be converted into satellite market centres. Preparations are ongoing at the selected sites; provisions are being made for places of convenience and urinals,” he stated.
The MCE added that the decision was necessitated by a persistent lack of adherence to the underlining safety protocols such as social distancing at the market centre – indicating that despite continuous public education, the state of congestion at the place was a clear defiance of the president’s directives.
He emphasised that the Assembly will not sit unconcerned for the vibrant Techiman Market to become a hotspot for the outbreak of COVID-19, and therefore appealed to all affected business persons and groups to cooperate with authorities for the greater good.
The Techiman Market Centre is the commercial-heart of the Bono East Regional capital. It is the major trading point for all manner of goods, especially wholesale and retail trade of foodstuffs such as maize, yam, cowpea, onion, rice and vegetables.
Commercial activities at the market centre somehow slowed down during the three-week partial lockdown of Accra, Tema, Kasoa and Greater Kumasi. The reason being that Accra and Kumasi are the leading final destinations for the bulk of food items at the market. All other things being equal, the city is expected to witness the usual bustling business activities since the president has lifted the restriction on movements.