Jeff Amechi Agbodo, Onitsha
Anambra State joint taskforce against touting and illegal internal revenue agents have arrested about 10 suspected illegal revenue agents extorting drivers and passers-by around Bridgehead and Upper-Iweka area of Onitsha.
The Taskforce led by the Commissioner for Trade and Commerce, Chief Uche Okafor (Wiper) and the Commissioner for Transport, Hon. Afam Mbanefo has ATMA, OCHA Brigade, Markets taskforce, Market Vigilante groups among other members.
On November 10 this month at the White house of Onitsha Main Market, the commissioners held a meeting with shareholders where the meeting rose with the decision to move into the streets and markets to arrest the criminals disguising as revenue agents.
Squeal to that, on Monday November 16, traders at Bridgehead Markets led by Chief Sunday Obinze banned collection of illegal tolls/levies inside markets or along the market roads by the suspected touts who disguise themselves as government agents.
The traders who frowned at the incessant harassment and intimidation of touts who forcefully and illegally collects various levies ranging from load levy, wheel and truck barrow levy from customers and traders said ‘enough is enough’.
The 27 market unions in bridgehead shut their shops for about two hours to sensitize the traders on how to stop touts from exploiting them and their customers who visit the market from different parts of the country and beyond.
The President General of Bridgehead Traders’ Market Association Chief Obinze while announcing the ban on illegal levy collection warned the touts to leave the markets or be arrested and prosecuted.