By Chimaobi Nwaiwu – Nnewi
Some revenue touts and market leaders have continued to defy the Anambra State Government ban on revenue collection on the major roads and roads leading into the markets, and are still engaging in the illegal collection.
The Anambra State government had through a Public Service Announcement, signed by the State Commissioner for Information and Public Enlightenment, Mr C. Don Adinuba, placed ban on revenue collection on the roads, following growing menace of gangs of people demanding and collecting money on the road from mostly travellers in cities and towns, such as Onitsha, Obosi, Nnewi, Amasea, Ogidi, Nkpor, including other places.
The government said the revenue touts pretend to be agents of the State Government, in their illegal, violent and brazen activities, which have resulted in serious security breaches and harassment of law-abiding citizens.
It added that none of the revenues so collected has ever been paid to the Government or any of its agencies, and warned that Anambra State is governed by law and order, and the Governor Willie Obiano’s administration will not brook any attempt by gangs of lawless and self-serving elements to make life miserable for Ndi Anambra, especially in this Christmas Seasons.
The warning by the government seem not to be obeyed as revenue touts are still sited almost at all the corners where they are located including at the Niger Bridge Head entry of Onitsha from Asaba, near Dim Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu plaque, Relief Market Ogaru opposite Upoer Iweka Flyover, Owerri Road and Obodoukwu road, where they are always wielding sticks in pursuit of motorists.
ALSO READ: Kogi queries permanent secretary over bread levy saga
However, a business man in Onitsha lamented over alleged harassment, intimidation and high level extortion he has been going through since August till date in the hands of the leadership of the Caretaker Committee of Ogbaru Relief Market, led by Mr. Victor Nwawuzie.
Meanwhile, when Vanguard contacted Mr Nwawuzie, he denied knowing Mr Ezeifo, or sending anybody to collect money for him, adding that he does not have any right to enter any private or government park to collect levy, but noted that where he has right is the parks in Ogbaru Relief Market.
Ezeifo had earlier in a petition against Nwawuzie, to both Governor Willie Obiano and the Commissioner for Transport Mr Afam Mbanefo, titled ”A cry for help on intimidation/illegal levies on heavy duty truck” alleged that he is being harassed and extorted on daily basis at 223 and 240 Obodoukwu Road Okpoko, Ogbaru council area.
He accused him of sending one Nkwa, who has been collecting between N3000 to N7000 from him daily without receipt, but only signed his signature and phone number on a paper after daily collection of money from him.
He alleged that his extortion started in May 2020 till date by Nwawuzie boys, adding that between August 12, 2020 to November, 23, he has paid N313,000 to Nkwa, through use of force.
Also in a Save Our letter against the leadership of the Ogbaru Relief Market Caretaker Committee, addressed to the Board of Trustees, BoT, of the market, signed by Mr Samuel Ani, Anthony Ozoezi Ezeifo Patrick and Ifediora Francis, owners of loading bay at Obodoukwu Road Ogbaru, they alleged that they have been paying between N1000 to N3000 and above per truck in their various offices.
However Nwawuzie maintained he neither know any of the complainants, nor sent anybody yo collect money for his administration, adding that “My power to collect levies is within the fore walls of the Ogbaru Relief Market, my power does not go beyond our market.
”I do not even know the Patrick Ezeifo in question, if he knows the people that have been collecting money from him, he should go and meet them, they are not working for me or our market.”
Vanguard News Nigeria
The post Despite ban by govt, Anambra touts, market leaders still collect revenue appeared first on Vanguard News.