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The Civil Liberties Organisation, Anambra State chapter, has told Governor Chukwuma Soludo to investigate the “racketeering” allegation levelled against the Commissioner for Commerce and Industry, Dr Obinna Ngonadi.
Ngonadi was accused of selling market leadership slots to the highest bidders across the state by a group known as Anambra Elite Traders Forum.
The group had petitioned Soludo while calling for the governor’s urgent attention.
However, the CLO, in a statement on Thursday, advised the governor to immediately constitute men of impeccable integrity with unbiased minds to unravel the circumstances surrounding the purported commercialisation and monetization of markets leadership offices.
The statement signed by its chairman and secretary, Comrades Vincent Ezekwueme and Chidi Mbah, respectively, commended the traders for following the path of constitutionality, civility, decorum and rule of law in airing their grievances.
The statement read, “Anambra needs peace and tranquility. Recall in the petition written by Anambra Elites Traders Forum alleging purported erection of illegal structures in some markets, contrary to the urban renewal initiative of Soludo administration as well as unprecedented extortions, exploitations, intimidations and collections of unauthorised levies from hawkers, petty traders, cat pushers, traders and visitors to the markets.
“It is pertinent to note that the despicable allegation is at variance with integrity, selfless, humanitarian and transparent posture of the current administration, hence the inevitable need to get to the root of the problem in order to forestall avoidable breakdown of law and order.
“In view of recent escalating insecurity in the state and the country, there is an immediate and ineluctable need to enthrone peace and tranquility that will precipitate accelerated development of the state.
“Soludo should counsel his Commissioners to always make themselves available and accessible to the citizens. They hardly take calls nor attend to problems, plights and predicaments of the citizenry on flimsy excuses that you came without an official appointment.
“They should emulate the humility and simplicity of Mr Peter Obi, who as governor of Anambra State, gave his phone number to all secondary school prefects in the state, this contributed immensely towards the state’s outstanding performances in all external examinations under his watch.
“Soludo should also set aside one day every week for town hall meetings and interaction with cross sections of the citizenry for on-the-spot assessment of impacts of government policies and programmes as well as get feedback from citizens. Government should spare no efforts to ensure peace, justice, equity, truth and social welfare of citizens, markets and entire the state.”