Traders Union of Cross River have hailed Governor Ben Ayade’s anti tax policy.
The Union made up of mostly commercial drivers, market women and petty traders have expressed gratitude to the Ayade’s administration for given priority to the poor doing business in the state.
Ayade had two months ago inaugurated Cross River State Anti Tax Agency with the mandate to look into illegal collections of taxes, dues, levies, revenues and tolls.
Speaking shortly after a consultative forum organised by Calabar Business Community on Friday, the spokesperson of Union Sampson Udo, said this is a novel idea in which the lower categories of business men and women are given tax and tolls exemption.
Udo said the members of this union have been subjected to all sorts of double taxation and levies as well as harassments by some agents of governemnt.
He said: “Ayade has broken records in the country as the first governor to introduce tac reliefs for the poorest of the poor. This really shows he loves us from the bottome of his heart. And we understand that other states including Akwa Ibom, Rivers and Ebonyi have also introduced tax exemption for petty traders.
“Now we can do business in the state without fear of molestation and harassment by touts masquerading as government agents. We have suffered a lot but thanks to this adminstration who found it expedient to come to our rescue.”
Earlier, the coordinator of Calabar Business Community and the organiser of the forum, Emmanuel Edet, said the was to senisitse them on the new government policy on tolls and taxation and how they can key into it to avoid being exploited.
Commending the organisers of the forum, the chairman of Cross River State Anti Tax Agency, Bishop Emmah Isong, said they are committed to implementing the government policy to ensure that the reall people get dividends of democracy.
Isong said already the agency had got approval from the Acting Chief Judge of the State, Justice Maurice Eneji, to setup mobile court while collaborating with the House of Assembly to review the state tax law in line with new policy.
He said: “Currently, we are partnering with the Christian body, Muslim community and relevant government agencies just as we intend to embark on mass sensitisation across the length and breadth of the state considering the enormous responsibilities we are carrying.”
Commending Ayade for setting the pace, he said: “Rivers, Akwa Ibom, Ebonyi and a host
of others are copying Ayade’s Anti-Tax Policy. Therefore, let us support His Excellency’s good governance and social programmes to Cross Riverians.”