The government of Kogi state has introduced a levy on every loaf of bread baked in the state.
According to reports, every baker and caterer in the state will have to pay a levy for every single loaf of bread and confectionery they produce in the state.
With regards to this, the state’s Ministry of Commerce and Industry hired a consultant, Musag Enterprises to levy the bakers.
The ministry made the introduction of the levy through a memo signed by the Commissioner’s Permanent Secretary, Usman Ibrahim on November 9.
The memo was addressed to the chairperson, Association of Master bakers and Caterers of Nigeria, Kogi State branch.
The collection of the levy will start from November 16, 2020.
This levy is coming at a time when entrepreneurs and small business owners have barely recovered from the hit of the pandemic on economic activities.
A loaf of bread sells for as low as N70 in Kogi State, but it is yet unclear how much will be levied on each loaf.
The memo read, “We write to introduce the above mentioned as the Consultant appointed by the Kogi State Ministry of Commerce and Industry, to collect the above-mentioned levy from all Master Bakers and Caterers doing business in and across Kogi State.
You are, therefore, required to avail them all necessary cooperation to enable them to carry out their assignment.
“The above-mentioned levy is to be paid per loaf of bread or other confectioneries products produced per day.
“Please do comply with this policy to improve the Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) of the State for the provision of better services and good governance.
“The collection of this levy shall take effect seven (7) days from the date of receipt of this letter. You are expected to communicate this information to all your members.
“Have the assurance of our esteemed regards.”
Reacting to the levy, the Kogi state chapter of the Association of Master bakers and Caterers of Nigeria (AMBCN) told TheCable on Thursday that the bakers are against the levy.
An executive member of the association simply identified as Godfirst said the association has begun moves to meet with the consultant the state charged with collecting the fee.
“The letter was sent to us that a consultant has been given the job to generate fund from bakery to state government.
“We are trying to meet with the consultant, but we have not been able to meet with him. We want to meet with him to give us more explanation.
“We are not happy about it. Presently, there is no market. We are facing different types of challenges, and if they are now asking us to pay another tax, we don’t know how we can cope,” he said.
In another development, the Minister of Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, has disclosed that his ministry is owing 3,504 Contractors across the country.
Fashola disclosed this when he appeared before the joint National Assembly Committee on Housing, to defend his ministry’s 2021 budget estimates.
According to the Minister, these owed contractors by the Federal Government are handling various housing projects to the tune of N69.9billion.
He added that the N76.4bn allocated to the ministry in 2021 would be grossly inadequate to execute 186 projects across the country.