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…As Union Bank, First Bank, others shut down operations
Union Bank branch at Balogun Business Association (BBA) and First Bank branch inside Association Progressive Traders (APT) were amongst worst hit structures at the massive Lagos International trade fair complex, Badagry Expressway by the tragic explosion in Abule Ado, Amuwo Odofin Local Government Area (LGA) of Lagos State on Sunday morning.
The blast forced the banks and other corporate services providers to shutdown as repair experts from head offices are expected to fix the damages while banking services remain suspended within the affected branches.
During fact checks by Business Hilights correspondents on Monday, bank officials explained that they shutdwon not just because of the shattered louvers, but the central processing units had issues with the blast which happened almost two kilometres to the trade fair complex even though both Abule Ado and Trade fair share perimeter fence.
Further checks within the trade fair complex revealed that over 85 per cent of all aluminium fittings and associated louvers were damaged and chips of glasses litter every part of the complex posing danger to both traders’ and customers.
Already, the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Fidelity Bank Plc, Mr. Nnamdi Okonkwo was the first corporate chief executive to visit the trade fair complex on Monday and commiserated with traders and others victims of explosive blast that wrecked unprecedented havocs on several structures in the complex.
Accompanied by other Executive Management staff, Okonkwo who visited the affected market areas was received by the leaders of the Balogun Business Association (BBA), Auto Spare Parts and Machinery Dealers Association (ASPAMDA) and Association of Progressive Traders (APT).
During discussion with the leadership of Trade Fair Stakeholders Forum executives lead by ASPMDA President, Chief Daniel Offorkansi, BBA President, Chief Tony Obih and APT President, Chief Eric Ilechukwu, Fidelity Bank boss prayed for the repose of the souls of those who died in the explosion and disclosed the bank’s readiness to make some token contributions to members of the traders’ associations whose shops and properties were destroyed.
Okonkwo averred that “We thought to come this morning to commiserate with you and see first-hand the damages caused by effects of the explosions.”
Responding, the market leaders thanked the bank for the gesture, noting that Fidelity Bank has been a true supporter and remain the most responsive of all financial institutions in the market.
Chief Offorkansi told Fidelity Bank boss that “You have indeed demonstrated to us that we are indeed partners. We will reciprocate this kindness and will continue to do everything within our powers to support the bank.”
BBA President noted that “Fidelity is not the only bank in this market. Coming here barely 24 hours after this incidence and offering financial support in addition, is quite commendable. We are still evaluating the extent of damages and the number of our members affected.”
Contributing, APT President, Chief Ilechukwu called on other corporate entities to emulate Fidelity Bank saying “it is people and organizations like you that we want. If others are like you, things will be better for it”.
Business Hilights recalls that only recently, Fidelity Bank had donated three brand new Toyota Hilux cars to the three leading associations in aid of their security and internal surveillance.
Explaining more on the level of colossal damages in the complex, officials of the TFSF told Business Hilights that almost all cars parked at the nearby mechanic village in the complex were all shattered which translates to another round of expenses for their owners.
They therefore called on the Lagos State Government to include business owners inside Lagos Trade fair complex in its scheme of compensation and relief support for victims of the Sunday explosion.
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