Ogoja Business Owners Resolve To Fight Illegal Tax, Seek Governor’s Intervention

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By CrossRiverWatch Admin

Members of Ogoja Amalgamated Traders Association at the meeting

Business owners in Ogoja under the auspices of Ogoja Amalgamated Traders Association have stated that they will “Fight all illegal and arbitrarily increase in revenue” from the Cross River State Government.

The traders said they were being harassed by Government revenue agents and contractors who seem to be increasing by the day coming to collect revenue and levies that have  never been heard of.

This resolution was contained in a communique which emerged from a meeting of the group held recently in Ogoja. The communique which was obtained by CrossRiverWatch is signed by the Secretary of the Association, Mr. Uchie David.

Part of the communique reads, “In recent times a lot of revenue contractors are coming to Ogoja to demand revenues that are new to us like carbon emission, haulers fees, fumigators fees,  dislodgement of effluent fee, , air pollution fee, customer protection council fees.

“If private schools in Ogoja are shutdown due to revenue related issues, where can we get qualitative education, if technicians are no more due to illegal revenues, who will render service in relation to their work to us, if there are no “Okadas” or transporters due to embarrassment by revenue agents, what will happen to our mobility, if traders flee Ogoja due to double taxation and intimidation by revenue agents, where can we buy goods?”.

The communique added that, “Ogoja does not have a market where we can easily checkmate their activities and because of these developments, it will be most suitable for all associations, entrepreneurs and manufacturers in Ogoja to come together for mutual understanding and relationship to fight all illegal and arbitrarily increased revenu.

The association also appealed to the governor of the state, Senator Ben Ayade to prevail on the state revenue agencies to pay heed to his August 2016 directive to ease taxes on low income earners in the state, pointing out that if that is not done, the pressure from the numerous revenue collectors will soon fold up their small businesses.

The governor also re emphasize this directive in January 2017 warning that anyone who fails to comply with the directive will be punished. But all across the state, business owners including artisans continue to complain of rising and multiple taxes.

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