The largest Market in West Africa
The largest Market in West Africa ,I got off the tricycle, smiling to myself at the veracity or truthfulness of the common saying “that an average Igbo an is a business man”, because it was apparent from the sight that beheld me. While I was still on my way into the market, the tricycle kept moving through crowded roads and streets which were hardly discernible but were fuming with a mind-blowing population of buyers, sellers, tricycles and all sorts of automobiles all going about their business in a grossly over-estimated hostile manner. The reality of watching them carry out their transaction was unfolding before me; it was like an eternity of drama playing out right before me. The piercing sound of automobiles linking their horn was deafening and drowned every other noise with it, from the touting of customers to the drivers screaming at someone to leave the already crowded road to permit free-foe of traffic.
There I stood in front of my destination but was rooted to the spot as if in a trance, overwhelmed by the incredibly weird sight. I was still starring when I was brought back to the present by someone who brushed past me hurriedly. I turned to look at the person in expectation of an apology but to my surprise she walked on without even turning. When I shrugged it off, now beginning o get used to the hostile environment, I was accosted by a guy who was asking to find out what I intended buying. I had not forgotten the terrible stories I had heard about his market before embarking on the trip so I ignored him and walked into the complex. The complex was a large building with different stores, so I was confused initially about where to check in for the item I had come to purchase. I was confused about where to check in directly for the item and how massive the complex was for me to try checking each of the stores.
Anambra State has its major markets spread across it but the Onitsha main market is the largest
and busiest within the regions, country and West Africa at large. The market offers a wide range of products and services. You can be assured of getting any kind of product at very affordable prices. An average trader in the area is known to bring in at least six consignments of 40 tonnes (40-feet containers) of goods annually which include clothing, jewelry, household equipment’s etc while major importers do more than 20 consignments of 40 tonnes of goods per year. Most of the major import merchants from Eastern Nigeria have their head office within the market so people from different parts of the country visit this market for small and large business transactions because most of the sellers get their goods directly from manufacturers and head offices. It will be safe to describe the market as the commercial power-house of West Africa as it is massively patronized by merchants in ECOWAS sub-region to the Niamey, Abidjan etc. It is officially referred to as the international marine market and it its located at the Harbor Industrial layout, Onitsha which is very close to the shores of the River Niger. It is bounded by the River Niger to the West and forge through Osumaru road from the East. My ordeal at the Onitsha main market was a harrowing experience and exhausting but shopping there is indisputably fun.