In addition to the rehabilitation and reconstruction of our existing markets discussed in Part 1 of this Plan, Government going forward will synergize the Transformation of our markets from their current traditional settings to mega and major malls. This will change the face of markets and gradually modernize the market environment in all parts of the State.
Today, markets in Anambra are unorganized and non-functional, lacking in basic facilities to enhance business. Apart from Onitsha Main Market, built by then Premier of Eastern Nigeria, Chief Michael Okpara in early 1960s and which has been destroyed over and over in a series of fire disasters, there is no modern market in Anambra State in the strictest sense.
The over 45 markets in Onitsha and its environs, which has contributed to making Onitsha unsightly, would have been accommodated in a fewer number of large, but well-constructed, functional, modern markets and malls. This would have made our markets one stop destination for buyers while providing a unique shopping experience for them.
Going forward, Government shall, design, acquire land and in partnership with a consortium of organised market developers and other Private sector investors and market associations build:
a. The Mall of Anambra in Onitsha. It shall be a well-designed, well-constructed, iconic, functional structure, conceived to be the largest shopping mall in Nigeria. The Mega Mall shall be designed to expect over 60 million visitors every year and employ over 20,000 Anambra residents.
b. Nnewi and Awka Major Malls
Apart from the Mall of Anambra to be built in Onitsha, my Government will also initiate and collaborate with private developer consortium and market associations to build major Malls in Nnewi and Awka respectively. These two malls are expected to provide great shopping and entertainment experience to residents and visitors of the two cities. The malls will be like the Mall of Anambra in all respects, but smaller in size and facilities to be provided.
c. We shall also make long term provisions for similar Malls in Ogidi, Ekwulobia, Otuocha and Ihiala.
These ultimately will innovate and gradually change the face of markets in Anambra State, help to change the state’s skyline and landscape, provide economic opportunities, create wealth, provide employment, reduce poverty, improve security and further create a new shopping experience in our state.
These malls shall have well designed firefighting stations, good toilet systems, regular water supply, waste management bays, Police stations, banking sections, ATM galleries, clinics etc.. It shall combine shopping with entertainment and make these malls a safe destination for residents.
d. Rural Market Development
It is believed that every Anambra community has at least a market. The markets derive their names from each of the four Igbo market days. The presence of a market in any rural community drives the economic prosperity of the community. My Government shall partner with each community, the Local government Council and independent private developers to gradually build for each community a template designed market.
Community Markets shall be divided into three categories – Mega, Medium and Small markets. Each of the markets depending on its category will be built following an acceptable template. Government shall put effort to engineer the growth of the markets by ensuring that certain markets are made to be recognized for certain item or group of items and goods. Franchise products and product brands which are promoted statewide, shall get assigned some store spaces in every community market, across the state to promote the brand.
e. Security of Markets and Bus Terminals.
Security of our state shall be our utmost priority. My government shall ensure that all our markets, malls and bus terminals are specially protected from terrorism, armed robbery, kidnapping and even petty theft. Apart from regular and special operational security, emphasis shall be placed on surveillance, intelligence gathering and e-security system and networking.
We shall implement a Behavior Detection Unit (BDU), specially focused on mitigating the threat of terrorism and enhancing counter-terrorism capabilities.
Join us, let’s go to work.