All “leviable adults” in Imo State have been ordered to pay N3,000 each as adult development levy, by Governor Rochas Okorocha. This information was contained in a statement released on behalf of the Governor by Louis Duru, the state commissioner for community government, culture and traditional affairs.
According to Louis Duru, who noted that the state had registered at least 2,000 leviable adults in each autonomous community, the money is to be used for “autonomous community adult development”. Each recognized autonomous communities in the state, will serve as the collectors and they are to pay not less than N6 million each.
It was further gathered that Governor Rochas Okorocha warned, that traditional rulers of defaulting communities will have their allowances or salaries suspended.
“To facilitate the payment, the state government through the ministry of CGC, since September 2016, has provided community adult registers for all autonomous communities in the state where the communities will enlist the names of at least 2000 leviable adults”, the statement read.
In 2017, the chairman of the Imo State Council of Traditional Rulers popularly known as Eze Imo, His Royal Highness, Eze Samuel Agunwa Ohiri would have either been in the hospital receiving treatment or in the morgue but for the intervention of security details attached to him.
Trouble started when Eze Ohiri came to the meeting and started telling the people of the need for all the taxable adults, to pay the N3000 development levy imposed on communities by the state governor, Owelle Rochas Okorocha.
He told them that the government might deny the people of the community the ongoing free education if the community did not meet up with the payment which would amount to N6million per community.
As the monarch was still addressing the people of Obi Orodo community in Mbaitoli Local Government Area of the state, one of the angry youths at the meeting, simply identified as Inno, rudely disrupted the address and started venting his spleen on the monarch and Governor Okorocha.
Inno, who claimed to be an unemployed graduate in the last five years but turned to okada riding, started shouting towards Eze Ohiri, said nothing would ever make him pay the levy and that whoever the monarch would use as task force to enforce the collection of the levy, would be a dead man if not careful.
His shouts encouraged others who were visibly angered by the introduction of the levy and they started charging towards the high table to drive home their points, a situation that led to Eze Ohiri’s security details whisking him away immediately.