Enugu Government Seals Popular Ogige Market In Nsukka After Imposing Taxes On Traders

Enugu map

In a bid to shore up revenue and increase the internally generated revenue, the Enugu State government has sealed a section of the Ogige Market Nsukka in the Nsukka Nsukka Local Government Area.

ugamatv gathered on Wednesday morning that the market was sealed in the wee hours of Tuesday morning by the Enugu State Board of Internal Government. 

In a desperate effort to meet the $30 billion IGR, Governor Peter Mbah-led administration has imposed an N21,000 annual tax on all traders in the state.

The sealing of the section of the market, a trader told journalist was based on the refusal of some traders to comply and pay the N21,000 market annual fee approved by Gov Peter Mbah’s administration.

The trader name withheld said: “Since Mbah assumed office last year he said every in the market will pay N21,000 annually to help his government in the development of Enugu State.

“Traders are feeling reluctant to pay because the increase is too much from the N3,000 we used to pay during Gov Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, the immediate past governor of the state.

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“It’s unfortunate that state government has made good its threat that if traders fail to pay Ogige market will be sealed.”

Meanwhile, the Chairman of Ogige Market Amalgamated Traders Association of Nsukka (OMATAN), Ngozi Ozioko has confirmed the sealing of some parts of the market by the government.

Ozioko said that it was to warn the affected traders that the government is serious and there is no going back on the annual market fee of N21,000 approved by the government.

“Some parts of the market are sealed today by the government to let traders know that the government is serious.

“I have been telling traders in the market to pay the fee since January to avert sealing the market by a government they are taking it as a joke but this morning they are rushing to pay because the government has sealed some parts of the market.

“I know the economy is hard, traders can pay the fee in instalments as it’s not compulsory for traders must pay the fee once.

“I am appealing to internal revenue to give us little time as traders are now rushing to pay the fee as approved by Enugu State Government, she said.

The chairman noted that traders not affected by the seal were free to open their shops for business whereas those affected by the seal would only be allowed to open their shops when they presented evidence of payment.

When contacted, Mr Emmanuel Nnamani, the Executive Chairman, of Enugu State Board of Internal Revenue confirmed that the board sealed some parts of Ogige Market on Tuesday for the failure of some traders to pay a government-approved annual market fee of N21,000.

“Yes the board sealed some parts of the market and until traders in these parts paid the fee the seal will remain. Anybody who unseal it without the board approval will be prosecuted,” he said.