Cross Rivers Governor Orders Stop of All Commercial Drivers’ Levies After Protest


Cross River State governor, Prof Ben Ayade, Wednesday suspended all levies paid by commercial drivers in the state.

The governor gave the order when members of the Unified Commercial Drivers Association in the state protested alleged the impounding of their vehicles, multiple taxation and a levy hike in his office in Calabar Wednesday.

Ayade who sent the Secretary to the State Government, Mrs Tina Agbor, to speak on his behalf said, “All your cars will be released. All the levies would be suspended, until the governor gets the papers and looks at them properly. When that is done, we would tell you what to pay.”

Chairman of the Association, Pastor Thomas Effiong Okon, who led the protesters, said, “We have always been supportive of the government. We have registered without complain. We gave government the support. We are not outsiders but part and parcel of the system. But it is an abnormality for people to sit on us because of their political appointments.

“On Monday we woke up and we saw our tickets had risen to N500 daily from N400. The N400 was even too high for us and we were even negotiating how to sort it out and the next thing it was just increased like that. As a peace loving person I met the State Security Adviser (SSA) on Monday, the issue was the same and they impounded our vehicles.

“We were with the SSA, Commissioner for Transport, the Department of Public Transportation (DOPT), and the Area Commander and sat down to sort out the issue because we don’t want to embarrass ourselves because this state is our state. They promised us yesterday that something was going to be done and it would go back to normal, but we discovered this was a falsehood.

“That is why we are here today to see the governor to tell us because we are over taxed. There is multiple taxation, multiple enforcement, so many government agencies are collecting money from taxes on daily basis.”

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