Reopened Abuja Craft Market Has PPP Arrangement-Runsewe

Otunba Olusegun Runsewe

The Director General, National Council for Arts and Culture, Olusegun Runsewe, has announced the reopening of the Abuja Arts and Crafts market, which was shut down in 2018.

Runsewe revealed that the reopened Arts and Crafts Village would run on Public Private Partnership.

Announcing his vision during a tour to the deserted centre in Abuja on Tuesday, Runsewe said he was poised to present Nigerians with the best cultural market in Africa with its launch of a new marketing strategy.

According to him, the new marketing strategy includes a toll gate, a night cultural market, a pharmacy offering free blood sugar tests to visitors to the market, and a birthday shop.

Runsewe said, “The cultural night market is the first of its kind in Africa. Between six and nine months of operating the village, we will operate it as a night market. There is nowhere you start the night market the same day. You have to operate first, and get people acquainted with the idea. So, one can leave the office at 5 pm to the village to shop.”

He further noted that visitors will be required to pay N100 to access the hub, another N100 to use the newly erected restroom, and N100 to park their vehicles.

According to him, the council in partnership with a pharmacy will host a pharmaceutical space with free medical tests including blood sugar tests for visitors to the space. Other proposed facilities in the cultural hub include an information/complaint centre to enhance the quality of products and services; and a quarterly media interaction session on developments within the village.

“Renters will pay N300,000 annually per shop, with a N100,000 refundable or rollover maintenance fee. This is to avoid a previous occurrence where renters accumulated electricity and security bills worth N8.5 billion and N4 billion respectively,” he said.

He also noted that the new additions to the village will include a business centre, a restaurant, a recreation centre and a traditional food centre, a photoshop, an Automated Teller Machine gallery with a minimum of four banks, a traditional salon, and a henna decorating shop.

Runsewe further revealed that there will be no third-party or middleman acquisition, adding that renters will go through the NCAC, to ensure that the crafts shops are not overtaken by only the rich and connected.

Runsewe added, “The village opens 7am to 6pm. The era of owning a shop and renting a part of it to others has come to an end. It is either you have a shop or you have no business in the village. We have built 20 modern toilets in the village, in addition to hosting a police station. Any misbehaviour will be dealt with immediately by the police.”



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