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ENUGU: Govt seals 106 shops, two banks for observing sit-at-home order

THE Enugu State government, led by Governor Peter Mbah, has closed 106 stores and two banks for allegedly observing a sit-at-home order issued by a part of the Indigenous People of Biafra, Simon Ekpa.

The governor stated that all of the sealed enterprises would remain closed for one week until his administration considered reopening them under specified conditions or selling them off.

According to a statement issued by the Secretary to the State Government, Prof. Chidiebere Onyia, 106 stores and two banks were shut on Monday by Enugu Capital Territory Development Authority personnel.

Onyia, who led the exercise on Monday, said the move was in line with the governor’s warning, adding that Mbah’s objective was not to punish businesses, but to promote and instill the mindset of ‘no sit-at-home’ among traders.

The SSG said, “In previous announcements to the good people and residents of Enugu State, the government had directed business and shop owners to open for normal businesses on Monday and every work day, or have the defaulting business premises and shops sealed.

“That was exactly what the government did on Monday, July 24, 2023, to enforce its earlier directives.

“All businesses that were sealed shall remain sealed for one week, at the end of which they shall provide their current tax clearance certificates and all other relevant revenue documents to enable the state government to review and consider their formal letters for re-opening.

“Again, all considerations start from Friday, July 28, 2023, at 2pm at the Enugu State Capital Development Authority headquarters.”

Onyia said the sealing of the businesses was not punitive but ownership culture, “where all of us come together to fight the menace of the illegal sit-at-home in the state.

“We are taking it up not because Mbah is in the business of stopping economic growth but to fight those that think they can intimidate us.”

He added that a task force created by the state government would be in the markets next Monday to continue to monitor the situation.

“We saw shops that were not open and we sealed them.

“That is why ECTDA is here and the owners should go through a process to get them reopened,” he said.

Recall that the Enugu State governor on Monday prohibited sit-at-home in the state on June 5, saying that it was harming the state’s economy.

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