Properties worth millions of naira were lost as shops belonging to some local traders in Akure, the Ondo state capital was on Tuesday morning razed by fire.
The incident occurred at roadblock junction, on the Akure /Ilesha expressway.
Traders told newsmen that the fire started around 2 am from one of the shops due to power surge before spreading into other locked stores.
Traders at the scene were seen wailing and counting their losses.
It was gathered that the late arrival of men of the Ondo State Fire Service was said to have worsened the situation as many helpless traders resorted to self-help.
A shop owner, Mrs Abimbola Adesanya, described the fire incident as unfortunate adding that goods worth millions were lost.
Adesanya pleaded with the government to assist the affected traders with any financial plans to help their businesses recover.
"We are begging Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu to assist us because millions of naira have been lost to this fire incident. Just imagine, Christmas is around the corner and we have stocked our shops with determination to make sales" she said.
Another shop owner, Paul Emmanuel, who was also affected by the fire, said no fewer than twelve shops were razed.
He disclosed that goods lost to the fire attack included -costly tailoring materials, cosmetics, foodstuffs among others.
Mr. Emmanuel stated that the midnight fire started from one of the shops before snowballing into other locked up stores. He described the inferno as tragic as the traders had newly stocked their shops for sales ahead of the festive period.
"I was called around 4 am that fire has gutted my shops at roadblock junction. By the time I got there, my shops and the other ones have been razed. We called the Fire Service Brigade office but they didn't pick their phone on time and we had to drive down to drag them here" he added.