By Tope Sunday, Ilorin
Kwara Butchers are divided and spoiling for war over the new tax regime introduced by Kwara State Internal Revenue Service, KWIRS, TIme Nigeria, can report.
It was further learnt that members of two butchers associations at Ipata Abbatoir in Ilorin, Kwara state, are now at longer heads over the modality for the collection of meat inspection fee by the state’s internal revenue agency.
One of the group,Irepodun United Butchers Association of Nigeria, Kwara state chapter, insisted that the KWIRS should appoint a consultant for the purpose of collecting the payable fee from them.
It rejected an alleged move by its rival, the National Butchers Association to take up the responsibility.
The association said it was surprised to see the rival group parading itself as the recognized body in its bid to collect N500 fee without the knowledge of the association that was properly constituted.
Addressing journalists on behalf of his colleagues at the association’s secretariat, Ipata Abattoir, Ilorin, on Wednesday, the General Secretary, Irepodun United Butchers Association, Alhaji Oba Elegede, said no any other group was known to the association as intermediary between it and the KWIRS on meat inspection fee collection.
He explained that the association had entered into an agreement with the management of the KWIRS that N100 will be deducted from the N500 payable to the agency per cow slaughtered in the abattoir, for remittance into the association’s coffers.
Elegede, who addressed Journalists alongside other leaders, said the association hitherto paid N135 on a cow but with the advent of the revenue agency, the system changed due to understanding reached with the management of the KWIRS.
He said the association had halted payment of the fee due to the brewing disagreement, just as he added that the state governor had been informed about the development.
The Irepodun Butchers Association scribe noted that it behoves the revenue service to return the consultant it employed to collect the payable fee from the association before resumption of payment could be effected.
Elegede insisted that it was only his association that was recognised and it would be impossible for the association to pay the fee through another group.
He stated further that the association decided to bring the development to the attention of relevant authorities to avert the looming face-off.
“We held a meeting with the KWIRS where they said N500 will paid on a cow. But we struck a deal in conjunction with the Chief of Staff, Kwara State Government House to be paying N400 on a cow.
“But of recent, stoppage was put to the payment of meat inspection fee because there is a non-existing body that had a meeting with the KWIRS and said they will be responsible for collection of meat inspection fee.
“These people have no followers, they are just there on political ground. The KWIRS decided to put stoppage by way of giving this responsibility of collecting meat inspection fee to them. And they are not real butchers.
“So we have to write a letter to the state governor through the Chief of Staff that stoppage had been put to the payment of meat inspection fee because we suspected a plan to favour the self-acclaimed group of persons, who are calling themselves National Butchers Association, which in the real sense of it, there is nothing like that. What we have today in Nigeria is a section body that comprises of four or six states”, Elegede said.