The Ebonyi State Government has ordered the sealing off of the popular building materials’ market, on Afikpo Road, Abakaliki, the state capital.
The order to seal off the market, which was given by Governor David Umahi, followed the refusal of the traders to pay income tax.
Umahi, who directed the Secretary to the State Government to liaise with the committee on building materials and the Abakpa Market, ordered the immediate relocation of the traders to the International Market.
“Work with the committee on building materials and the Abakpa Market. I want them (traders) to relocate to the International Market. The building materials’ market should be sealed off. They (traders) have refused to pay income tax,” Umahi stated.
Investigation by Southern City News revealed that there were plans by the state government to relocate the traders to another place.
It was gathered that the state government had earmarked the site of the building materials’ market for the building of an interstate polo park, even as the planned relocation had not gone down well with the traders.
Efforts to get the reaction of the Chairman of the Abakaliki Building Materials’ Market, Ifeanyi Nwudele, were unsuccessful as he refused to comment on the matter.
He simply said, “There is nothing happening.”
On the relocation order, a trader, Mr Nweke Chinwendu, told our correspondent that the state government had provided a place for the traders at the International Market and commended it for the plan, saying they were paying exorbitant rents at their present location.