By Chimezie Anaso
Awka, – Alhaji Bello Maigari, Chairman of Amansea Cattle Market, Awka South Local Government Area of Anambra, said his members were ready to contribute to the economy of the state through payment of all the levies and taxes.
Maigari who spoke on Sunday in Awka, while briefing newsmen, described the relationship between the cattle breeders and host communities in Anambra as cordial.
He said that currently, his members only pay veterinary services levy, but noted that they were in talks with officials of the state government to work out an internal revenue arrangement to be paid to the state.
“We are discussing with the state government on the revenue that our members will be paying apart from the veterinary services fee we are currently paying.
“Before now, there was lots of people collecting money from cattle sellers in the states across the country, but the Federal Government has abolished all that.
“Here in Anambra, we are about to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the state government on what we will be paying as revenue and how we will be paying it,’’ he said.
The chairman who is also the secretary of Hausa community in Anambra, said the Amansea Cattle Market had operated for about 20 years without harassment because of the good understanding that exists between the cattle sellers and the host community.
He said they understood that the land where they currently occupied belonged to a family whom they pay royalty to, and also obtain permission from communities where they graze their cows.
He said his members buy feed for their cattle instead of moving around with the cattle for grazing.
“We know that the place we are using now belongs to a family, we respect that and pay them royalty, and everyone is happy.
“At times we buy feed from the north, a bag cost N3, 000 and you need three of it to feed five cows every day,’’ he said.
Maigari thanked Gov. Willie Obiano of Anambra for setting up the Cow Menace Committee, which he said had contributed greatly to achieving peace in the state.
He said that the committee had intervened in crisis which would have degenerated to full fledged conflict with his members and different communities in the state.
He urged Obiano to help them develop the land that had been allocated to them to enable them relocate, as development was fast approaching their present market.
He said there was need to fence the place, provide security, water, and other amenities, including place of worship.
“This place is getting choked because of the development, we are appealing to Gov. Willie Obiano to help develop the land he has earmarked for us so that we can move to the place,’’ he said.