By ifeoma ikem
Market Leaders and Traders Association of Nigeria, Lagos State Chapter, listed multiple taxation/levies by government agencies and molestation by law enforcement and paramilitary agents as recurring problems affecting the trading community.
President of the Lagos Chapter, Mr Christopher Okpala, cited the issues the association commemorated the First ever International Traders Day and held its Annual Business Award in Lagos.
He said that incessant market closure by various levels of government, incursions of foreigners in the local market, unfriendly business environment and unfriendly policies by financial institutions were other challenges faced by the traders.
There is also poor infrastructure in our markets.It is our hope, that all government officials present and our partners will assist in tackling the above issues.
The Annual Business Award is held every four years, during which some members of the sector are recognised for their contribution to the growth of commerce industry.
The declaration of International Traders Day was long overdue.
“In the trading community, a day should be set aside annually to celebrate the contribution of traders and the trading community (commerce sector) in the growth and development of all aspects of our national life.
“This is bearing in mind that the sector is the third highest contributor to the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), taking after the petroleum and agricultural sector.
“It will also be a day to discuss and proffer solutions to the many problems bedeviling this all-important sector that also is no doubt the highest employer of labour in the country.
“As we declare this day Oct. 31 as the annual International Traders Day, we encourage all traders in the house to enter it in their yearly diary.
“They should spread the news to all traders and market persons that today has become a day with history, in the entire trading community across Nigeria.’’
Okpala canvassed that Oct. 31 be observed internationally as International Trader’s Day and that all policy makers in Nigeria take cognaissance it.
The association leader said members who were being recognised were in two categories -award for the Trading Community and Models of Excellence Award.
According to him, the awards are based purely on merit and not based on one’s fat bank account.
Mr Nnamdi Obiefuna, the Immediate Past President of Association of Stationary and Computers Dealers Association of Nigeria (ASCODAN), urged the government to create a more enabling environment for business to be done in the country.
He also called on the government to put measures in place to ensure that loans are given with low interest.
Speaking chairman of the occasion, Ononugbo Alfred, corporate brand excecutive of Bell Ltd protocol/security support services, have advised federal government to provide raw materials for local manufacturer with a view to boost the economy.
I wil commend president Muhumadu Buhari for border closure because Nigeria has become a dumping ground,but with this I will give him hundred percent kudo.
I will also advised the president to look into government officials going to oversea for treatment and sending their children out of the country for education, it can help to improve the nation economy
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