Professor Chukwuma Soludo, and the Commissioner for Commerce and Industry, Obinna Ngonadi, have been commended by traders in Onitsha for their fight against touts and illegal levy collectors in markets across the state.nambra State governor,
The traders led by an industrialist in the state, Chief Mike Emerah, and traders from the New Auto Spare Parts Market, Nkpor, Idemili North Local Government Area, stated this on Wednesday while advising the governor not to relent in the effort at totally sanitizing the markets.
The group dismissed the corruption allegations against the commissioner, describing it as the handiwork of disgruntled elements who want the “business as usual” tradition to continue in the markets.
Emerah, who is also the chairman, the Board of Trustees of the market, said no amount of blackmail would deter the duo of the governor and the commissioner from taking traders and the people of the state to the next level.
He said, “This administration sacked touts on the roads, parks and markets and everybody is happy. As far as I know, the commissioner is not one of those you can easily entice with money or any gift item. That is why they are attacking the commissioner for doing the right thing.
“So when you are ensuring that the right thing must be done, this is the type of attack you get in return for refusing to abide by the business as usual tradition. He should be strong because more of such bullets are coming as they will continue because it is from there that these attackers eke their living.
“Most of them are defeated candidates in both New Auto Spare-parts and other markets, and the offence of the commissioner is that he stopped the continuation of construction of illegal structures, overstay in office, flawed election, wrong shops enumeration, among others, as he insisted that due process must be followed.”
In his reaction, the chairman of the New Auto Spare-parts market, Chief Elysius Ozorkwere, described the allegation against the commissioner as frivolous and a figment of the imagination of defeated candidates and saboteurs who orchestrated such allegation to attract sympathy.
“We have approval from the Anambra State Physical Planning Board and a solid recommendation from the commerce and industry ministry, even before the new commissioner came on board and he merely authenticated the approval after perusal and the project is 30 percent constructed and we hope to get it completed in record time.
“We assure the genuine traders that their shops are intact and those members without shops will have one, despite the antics of the opposition, what the traders should do is to disregard the few that failed election and listen to the executive that is interested in their welfare,” Ozorkwere stated.
In his own contribution, the secretary of the market, Uchenna Malobi, said that the documents were there for all to glance and know that the project has the backing of the state government, duely approved by the state physical planning board and endorsed also by the commerce and industry ministry.
TheNewsGuru.com recalls that Soludo, during his swearing-in as Governor of Anambra State, vowed to end the activities of touts and revenue collectors in the state.
Soludo, a former Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) governor, said this during his inauguration as the governor of the state.
In his words, “As a new order, many unproductive systems will give way. There will be new and better ways of managing our parks, managing our markets, different and better ways of collecting government revenues, managing waste, and general service delivery to citizens.
“We must ladies and gentlemen rid Onitsha and all our roads and markets of touts and make Anambra a pleasurable experience.
“Today, I will sign an executive order to suspend all revenue contracts operating in the parks, markets an roads until we put in place a new system within the next four weeks.”
According to the governor, from March 18, 2022, no one should pay cash as revenue to the government in the parks, markets, and roads.
“Market unions must also stop harassing the customers,” he added.