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Abia set to wage war against illegal revenue collectors •Awards N14.8bn contracts for roads, street lights

By Boniface Okoro, Umuahia on 04/08/2016

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The Abia State Government is set to wage war against illegal revenue collectors as it plans to put in place, a task force to arrest and prosecute such people.

Abia State Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Comrade Bonnie Iwuoha, who made this known while briefing newsmen on the outcome of an emergency meeting of the State Executive Council (EXCO), also announced that government has awarded contracts worth N14.8 billion for construction of 10 roads, a health centre and street lighting projects

Fake revenue agents have been on the prowl in Abia, particularly in Aba and Umuahia where they intimidate and harass unsuspecting members of the public and fleece them of their money in the name of government.

The menace of fake revenue agents rose to an alarming rate, prompting the Abia State House of Assembly, in 2014, to conduct a special sitting in Aba, in a bid to eradicate the practice.

According to Iwuoha, the EXCO,  in its current resolve to weed out  illegal revenue collectors, has taken a firm decision to put an end to illegal collection of taxes and levies by touts in both Aba and Umuahia by setting up a task force empowered to arrest the people involved in the illegal business and prosecute them.

The EXCO believes that such actions would deter criminally-minded persons with intent to cheat government and dispossess their victims of their hard-earned resources.

“We know it that in Aba in particular there are several people who go about collecting money from residents and businesses. They are not sent by government even though they claim so,” the Commissioner said.

He disclosed that projects for which contracts have been awarded include a total of 50.47 kilometres of roads located in urban and rural areas, provision of street lights on two stretch of roads in Umuahia and the construction of a Child and Maternal Health Centre at Abia State University Teaching Hospital (ABSUTH), Aba.

The Commissioner said that the contract for the rehabilitation and expansion of the 4.8km Faulks Road and its drainage component in Aba which leads from the Enugu-Port Harcourt expressway to Ariaria International Market has been reviewed upwards from N5.6 billion to N6.8 billion.

He explained that the review of the contract sum for Faulks road became necessary because of the “level of work” expected to be done at Ifeobara basin to tackle the perennial problem of flooding in the area.

Iwuoha stressed that Governor Okezie Ikpeazu has made it a point of duty to ensure that every road project constructed by his administration must have a life span of a minimum of 10 years and has likewise impressed it upon contractors of the need to do high quality jobs.

•Photo shows Comrade Bonnie Iwuoha.

Source News Express

Posted 04/08/2016 10:00:03 PM

 

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