A massive fire is raging at the main market in the Nigerian town of Azare in northern Bauchi state, with dozens of shops – possibly more than 100, according to eyewitnesses.
The blaze started at about midnight local time and some nine hours later, firemen are still struggling to extinguish it.
Goods, ranging from textiles to foodstuffs, have been destroyed in the fire.
The cause of the disaster is still not known.
Bauchi government spokesman Umar Ibrahim Sade told me that firemen are finding it difficult to put out the blaze because of poor access to the market’s “nooks and crannies”.
Photos of the fire have been put up on Twitter, with some residents calling on people to make dua (an Islamic term for supplication to God) for them.