A man from Enugu East has sent an SOS message to the governor of Enugu State calling for the government’s intervention on the exorbitant and incessant levies being extorted from the residents in spite of the scorch of the economic hardship and bad infrastructures in the local government area.
His letter sent to 9News Nigeria is posted below:
The Enugu East local government has once again become the most notorious urban local government where different Levy’s/taxes are enforced with intimidations.
It was not surprising to hear that it has begun another brutal levy extortion of transporters, private vehicles and building developers.
We are crying for your help. You should remember that such excesses were exhibited something’s ago by the same local government which promoted the state government in creating MTO(Motor Traffic officer’s) to work in our traffic motor roadways to stop the mess and mass extortions of the public going on now.
Those gangs of men have resurfaced again in Abakpa urban community with all kinds of traffic Levies. Apart from traffic Levies, We have other levies and dues paid in building development, excluding the normal town planning fees and rates.
We now have what can actually sound like amusement, but it is real. Exorbitant levies paid here for this or that.
These are the levies being paid here by their names:
YOUTH EMPOWERMENT LEVY – Although we been paying a building development levy ever since. But recently another levy payment for a new building was created by the local government named YOUTHS EMPOWERMENT LEVY and sold to the highest bidder for revenue collection.
It’s a complete conspiracy in defrauding the citizens. Some group of boys will invade your building asking for your payment of such a named levy. It is criminal for someone to invade your house uninvited and cats way with your property. It is pure stealing and trespassing.
I am sending an SOS to whom it may concern to call the local government chairman to order with all these drastic levies.
Asking for such Taxes at this bad period of covid to the good people of Abakpa urban communities is frustrating and sad..!!! I am sounding this observation before things go wrong.
These gangs of men will enter your building site and starts to carry way your building materials or properties. It’s too disheartening that the government should allow such hooliganism to operate in their names and letterhead papers signed with exiting offices inside the local government as a back-up. I could also remember that sometimes ago the government of the Enugu state did abolish multiple Levy collection or extortion on house development in Enugu state.
It is the primary responsibilities of the local or state government to empower its citizens not by levying people who are contributing to the economy of the state by personal providing housing for the masses. It is high time we stop criminality in government as a tool to generate revenue.
Selling legislative law’s for enforcement to hooligans as revenue collectors has been creating criminality in the society and our common citizens are suffering at the hands of these vendors.
In Abakpa market the government should investigate the kind of daily extortions of poor market women and children even does ones selling cool water, groundnuts and fresh tomatoes sellers all pay daily Levy’s between two hundred to five hundred for those selling chickens. This is cutting ponds of fresh from the poor in poor among us by the politician who is met to empower them.
Even Keke drivers, minibus drivers are all crying and paying from their noise daily..it’s sad allowing this criminality to go on in Abakpa market.
From my observation, it is said that these acts of extortion are a grand plan by the local government authority and his chairman who will legislate Multiple levy bye-laws and will invite some fraudulent businessmen to buy up those laws for enforcement on the common citizens of Abakpa urban wards communities with intimidations and forceful extortion of different payments charges from 20,000 to 100,000
They can manufacture false claims in order to extract money from the victims right inside the local government building. After the payment and the receipt of your payment issued, you will be required again to undergo another mental treat by the security’s both the property custodian and the local government gate security men will all take their parts in demanding for payment settlement of between two thousand to five thousand Naira.
If you dare fail to pay such a fee you will be locked up inside the local government headquarters till your payment. With all these disgusting threats and molestation you will be dubbed and frustrated.
Multiple levy collections and taxation is the complete enslavement of Nigerian citizens. After this ordeal from them, I asked myself what project or projects have this present leadership of Enugu east has actually executed even in road networks.
All roads in Abakpa are all very bad and unmotorable. lt is also very painful that this ill-treated population are still the same people whom those politicians will always run to for their votes when the time for elections come.
Why then are we treated like slaves with forced taxes and levies in Enugu east local government? All the bye-pass roads, like Umuchigbo road, Abakpa Catholic church via housing estate road to Ugwuago road, via harmony estate road currently in use due to sudden Enugu state flyover construction in Abakpa, are all on their worst stages.
And motorists are finding it very difficult to make their ways to Nusskka or Abuja and other parts of Nike communities. Those old existing road should have been rehabilitated before embarking on the flyover construction.. We must learn to plan before execution to bridge the inconvenience been witness in Enugu east now. The flyover construction is yet to take off as works are still in the confused and sleeping stage now. Nothing is moving.
By Prince Charles Okongwu (Enugu)