Having spent over six hours at the scene, the firefighters are yet to finally put out the raging fire.
Traders of the razed Balogun market in Lagos have lamented the inability of the firefighters to put out the raging inferno.
There was a fire outbreak at the popular Lagos market in the early hours of Tuesday, November 5, 2019.
Despite the intervention of government and private firefighters, the traders-- some of whom are victims of the inferno--lamented the inability of the firefighters to put out the fire.
Occupants of near-by buildings had to quickly evacuate their shops as the inferno spread.
All the shops in the burning section of the market were shut down.
When Pulse visited the scene, we witnessed the fire was still raging hours after.
One of the traders who identified himself as Bayo Owosanmi, said “it is over six hours and as you can see, the fire is still burning. The government keeps failing us everyday, it’s taking forever to put out this fire.”
According to another trader in the market who preferred anonymity for this story, the firefighters looked confused. He said, “they have been struggling to put out this fire, but still yet to put out. I’m still wondering if I’m really experiencing this. I’m here witnessing our firefighters' failure put out this fire.”
One of the traders whose shop was affected, Titilayo Oreoluwa told Pulse that the fire started around 7am and was still raging at 4pm when Pulse left the scene to file this story.
"I think this is the right time for the government to set up a fire station in the market. I lost some of my goods due to the fire incident today, and the fact that it's still burning is worrisome.
"The government should equip the firefighters for incidents like this," she said.
Bayo Lawrence, another trader in the market, also called on the government to do something to avoid a similar occurrence in the future.
The atmosphere was tense and charged as Pulse filed proceedings meters away from the fire. Scuffles broke out around our crew and at one point, a crowd of thugs and miscreants charged towards us and sent us scampering for safety with our equipment.
Miscreants took advantage of the confusion to fleece onlookers and passersby of their phones and wallets.
Firefighters are still battling to put out the fire at the time of this report (5pm). There were no casualties at the time of filing this story.
This is the third fire outbreak in a Nigerian market in two weeks. There have been fire outbreaks in Onitsha and Maiduguri markets in the last fortnight.
The Balogun market is sprawled across many blocks on Lagos Island--the center of a densely populated and chaotic city.
The market is famous for its colorful Nigerian fabrics, choice wines, apparel, shoes and just about everything else.