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Anambra: Tricycle operators set to fight extortion, multiple levies

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By Phil Okose, Onitsha

Tricycle (keke) and motorcycle commercial riders in Anambra state under the aegis of United Commercial Keke-NAPEP and Motorcycle Riders Association of Nigeria, UCKEMORAN, Monday hinted that it would wage war against multiple levies and illegal revenue collectors who extort each of its members a whopping N3,500 per day.

Fuming while fielding questions from newsmen in Onitsha over the two problems, the union’s state chairman, Chief Arinze Igbanuka, stated the union’s resolve to wage the war against the extortionists immediately.

“We seek Governor Willie Obiano’s approval to flush out these touts who forcefully collect multiple levies amounting to N3,500 daily from each of our members in the name of revenue drive for government.”

“We, UCKEMORAN, had, in a letter addressed to the governor, Chief Willie Obiano, stated that each of our members operating from Owerri Road to the popular Onitsha Main Market pays as much as N3.500 daily to touts and that has become a burden too much for us to bear.”

A copy of the letter to the governor, signed by Igbanuka and the group’s secretary, Comrade Raphael Agu, read in part thus: “UCKEMORAN Anambra state chapter hereby brings to your notice that we shall forthwith commence operation to regulate the activities of Keke-NAPEP and motorcycle riders who are members of the association in Anambra state and by so doing checkmate the road side touts collecting multiple illegal levies from us.”

“In establishing UCKEMORAN we took into cognisance of security of lives and property which is the uttermost priority of Governor Obiano’s administration”

According to the letter, members of UCKEMORAN are ready to stop all forms of illegal levies and illegal tax collection in Anambra state and ensure that their members are law abiding with compliance to the rule of law and ensuring that their members pay taxes and levies that are due to the state government.

They also vowed to liaise with the police and other security agents to flush out criminals using Keke and motorcycles to rob unsuspecting members of the public if their request to start operation is approved.

“We hereby solicit the support of the state government in the area of recognition and enabling environment to enable us lawfully operate freely and pledge to make sure that Anambra remains the safest state in Nigeria.”
“In the same vein we pledge our unflinching loyalty to your administration and our support for APGA in the forthcoming governorship election in Anambra state. We, therefore, assure Governor Obiano that we will abide by the rule of law and all directives from his revered office.”

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