Abia State Deputy Governor Ikechukwu Emetu has summoned the leadership of the Ekeoha Market Association to his office next Tuesday or allegedly flouting Governor Alex Otti’s directives against the collection of market tolls and levies in the market.
They are also expected to explain to the state government why they erected illegal structures constituting threats to the lives of people and also explain the reason for collecting unapproved levies and tolls from traders.
The Deputy Governor made these known in Aba while addressing a mammoth crowd and traders who received him at the Ekeoha Shopping Center Aba.
He notified them that his boss, Governor Otti, had also directed the immediate dissolution of all existing market committees in the State as well as the suspension of all forms of levies.
He maintained that the new administration would not tolerate those building shops in unapproved places, adding that extortion of traders would not be tolerated by the state government.
The Abia Deputy Governor, who also visited Ariaria International Market in Aba, warned those who were still collecting illegal levies to desist from doing so or face the full wrath of the government.
In their remarks, some of the traders, Mr Innocent Chinedu and Mrs Chinasa Onu thanked Otti’s administration for coming to their rescue and promised to support and cooperate with his administration’s policies.
Meanwhile, reports from the Office of the Deputy Governor stated that the Chairman of Ariaria international market, Aba, Michael Chijioke Amaku, has been arrested for alleged high-handedness and intimidation of traders.
Apart from these, Amaku was also alleged to have imposed illegal levies on traders.
The report added that more touts were arrested in parts of Enyimba of Aba for allegedly going ahead with the collection of levies and extortion of traders and motorists.
It would be recalled that Ekeoha Market was embroiled in leadership crises during the past administration in the State as some of the market leaders opposed the former administration’s plans to construct more stalls to the existing ones.