Lagos: Traders lament multiple levies, extortion in markets

Traders at various markets in Lagos State, particularly Balogun Market in the Lagos Island Local Government Area of the state are lamenting the multiple levies they pay to the government, alleging extortion.

Speaking on Tuesday, some traders at the Balogun market claimed that they are compelled to pay N50,000 in six months, while others pay over N100,000 annually.

The traders also claimed that they pay N700 in taxes daily while stating that they will be forced to vacate their stalls if they fail to make the payment.

A trader at Balogun Market simply identified as Emmanuel claimed that traders pay more than N100,000 a year.

Emmanuel said “We pay N50,000 or N60,000 in six months we pay N100,000 or above yearly.”

Another trader identified as Iya Biliki claimed that the traders pay weekend taxes in addition to annual taxes.

She said “For me, per year they collect N50,000 and every Saturday and Sunday they collect N300 from traders. What they are doing is illegal but the thing is that we don’t have any other choice because we don’t have shops in the market.”

A trader at Ikeja market identified as Mummy Mercy said, “We pay to stay on the roadside. Even the hawkers pay money daily. Some of them pay N500 daily while some of them pay N200 daily. There is nothing free in Lagos. We traders that stay close to the rail tracks pay N400 daily.”

When contacted, the Chief Press Secretary to the State Governor, Gboyega Akosile, said “Although every working person must pay tax, whether petty trading or big stores.”

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