The Cross River state government has threatened to arrest and prosecute anyone who tries to obstruct Igbo traders from opening their shop on June 22 and 23 respectively.
The government in a press statement signed by Mr. Alfred Mboto, the Permanent Secretary on Security advised all traders in the state to disregard any purported warning and open their shops for business as the government is doing everything possible to guarantee their safety.
The statement reads
“The attention of the Cross River State Government has been drawn to a plan by some members of Igbo traders union in the Calabar metropolis to force their members to close their shops for two days with effect from Monday, June 22, 2020.
Government is also aware of the threat of N50,000 surcharge by the union on any Igbo trader who opens his or her shop for business within the two days.”
The government frowns at their action saying “Their plan is unacceptable to government and government will do everything within her power and the law to arrest and prosecute any person or group of persons under any guise seen obstructing any Igbo trader from opening his/her shop for business in the state on Monday, June 22, 2020 and Tuesday, June 23, 2020.”
It enjoins all traders to go ahead and open their shops saying “All Igbo traders in Calabar and the entire Cross River state are therefore, advised to disregard the call and threat of the Igbo traders union and go ahead to open their shops for their legitimate businesses.”
The government called for support in the fight against cultism and kidnapping saying “The union is rather enjoined to encourage the state government on the ongoing war against kidnappers, cultists, drug trades, armed robbers and other illegal operations in the state instead of scuttling the effort of the government”.
Recall that the Igbo Traders union had issued a release calling on her members not to open their shops on June 22 and 23 over what they describe as arbitrarily charges and increasing insecurity which has led to the kidnap of their members.