Traders Decry Multiple Taxes on Business

Traders on the Lagos Business District have condemned the various taxes and levies charged by both the state and local governments on their businesses.

They traders listed about six different levies they claim were being charged by the government, which they described as tool of frustration and humiliation to their businesses. In a chat with Broad Street Diary, BSD, some of the traders on Broad Street, Marina, Balogun, Idumota and its environ, said apart from the taxes and levies on their wares, which were normally charged by the state government, officials from local government also charged them on everything they used in the shop including their electronic, while a particular charge was also levied on their personality as traders.

A wine dealer, Tawa Hussein, told BSD that the various taxes and charges have constituted hindrance to their progress, especially the small scale traders, as most of the profits went for taxes.

She said despite their plea to the government, the pressure of those people who paraded themselves as local government officials continued to intensify daily, creating doubt as to whether the “officials’’ were genuine local governments staff.

Hussein said traders were however, helpless since the government has refused to check the officials and their activities.

She also alleged that apart from the amount traders were charged in their shops, they were also made to pay other levies in their homes for those of them living within the vicinity of the market.

Also speaking, a beverages seller, simply identified as Iya Amirah lamented that Lagos State Government is making business difficult for them with multiple taxes.

“We traders know the real implication of the multiple taxes and other unnamed levies on our businesses and our personal lives.

Even some of the taxes without receipts are killing us.”

A trader from Balogun market, who also attested to the taxes charged the traders, said, “My brother, look around you and ask everyone here. The government has finished us with taxes. We only want to appeal to the state government to revisit the issues of the multiple taxes so that traders can make headway.”

Another small shop owner, who gave her name as Hajia said even though she and other traders did not have television sets in their shops, the Lagos State government through the Lagos State Inland Revenue Service, LIRS, still collects TV and Radio taxes from them.

The traders however, pleaded with the government to help them out. They also call on the government to ensure that the right people collect the taxes and that the tax is used for the development of the business district.


Source: National Mirror Nigeria

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