By Archibong Jeremiah
A Cross River based businessman has said the Ayade led administration is more tax friendly than that of his predecessor, Senator Liyel Imoke, which according to him, was characterized by far more multiple taxes.
Mr. Edet Asuquo, Managing Director of Adsuit Investment Limited stated this in an exclusive interview with CrossRiverWatch TV recently.
His said: “In Imoke’s tenure, taxation was going on but it was more organized, they organized themselves, there was a lot of multiple taxation but it was more organized. They were using reputable consultants who will be able to defend them and at times even when the taxes are illegal they will look for a way to bargain and defend”.
He alleged that, “The Governor himself, Imoke didn’t say anything because he was enjoying the tax. But the difference between Imoke and Ayade is that Ayade has been bold enough to come out publicly to say look; leave my people, don’t tax poor people, allow them to rest. You can remember that during Governor Imoke’s time, even small people that were selling banana, groundnut on the road were taxed, if you don’t pay, they will come and park your banana, but Ayade has said nobody should tax them”.
“And of course the Governor has made a public statement and if you insist to tax them, they can revolt against you and if they revolt against you they will quote the Governor, the Governor, if he likes, let him swallow his pride and deny, but as far as I’m concerned, the man has come out and made a policy statement.”
He concluded by revealing his dissatisfaction with the Ayade Government, “The only problem I have seen in this Government is allowing everywhere to become market, everywhere in Calabar has become a market place and it’s not decent, it’s not good for tourism. Of course we have designated market for people to sell and even in those designated markets, people are selling on the road”.