Ikeja Computer Village Board Explains Role in Levy Collection

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Folashae Ojo Tinubu

Emma Okonji

Contrary to allegation making the rounds that the N1,000 monthly levy imposed on market traders of the Ikeja Computer Village, was meant to settle the N5 million daily request by the Iyaloja-General of Lagos State, Mrs. Folashade Ojo Tinubu, the Iyaloja and Babaloja of the Ikeja Computer Village market, Mrs. Abisola Azeez and Mr. Adeniyi Olasoji, have said there was no iota of truth in the allegation.

They have insisted that the N1,000 monthly levy was meant for market security, sanitation and maintenance of existing infrastructure in the market like street lights, trash bins, among others.

According to the market board, led by the Iyaloja and Babaloja, “The N1,000 monthly levy is meant to be paid by owners of each shop in the market, numbering 4,320 registered shops and we just started collecting the money, which will be used for security and maintenance of the market.”

The market leaders who addressed a recent press conference in the Computer Village about the lingering issues in the computer market, led by Azeez and Olasoji, said: “The allegation about our Iyaloja-General of Lagos State, requesting N5 million daily from the market leaders of Ikeja Computer Village, is false and an attempt to deceive the general public and to drag the reputation of Iyaloja-General to the mud and we will not allow that to happen.”

“We are truly shocked by the allegation because Iyaloja-General is a woman of high reputation and she has never asked for any money from the Computer Village Market Board, since it was inaugurated on May 2, 2019. We are committed to working harmoniously with the different associations and tribes in the market, to make an all inclusive administration that will carry everyone along in the progress of the market board and the market community,” Azeez said.

Addressing the issue of market security, the Iyaloja said the market had always accommodated thousands of sellers and buyers on a daily basis who troop in and out of the market to trade on computer devices, electronic devices and their accessories, before the global lockdown that was necessitated by the spread of COVID-19 pandemic, which forced the market to open three times weekly, as directed by the Lagos State Government. She explained that the influx of people into the market, called for security concern, hence the need to levy traders to address all security concerns, including maintenance of existing market infrastructure.

She further explained that the market had never been shutdown as alleged by some group of traders who are out to cause trouble in the market.

“We have not had any crisis that led to the shutdown of the market. Some media houses have visited the market to see things for themselves and they actually saw the market active with people going about their normal business of buying and selling,” the Iyaloja said. Plans to reconcile all factions in the market is ongoing. What we need is peaceful market condition and that is what we strive to achieve, she further said.

The Ikeja Computer Village market, located in Otigba area of Lagos, is an old market with the largest concentration of computer traders in West Africa. Traders had complained of space congestion and the need to relocate the market to a bigger space, but the state government is yet to meet such request, even though a permanent market location has been named in Katangoa, a suburb of Lagos.