Lagos State Government is set to give tax breaks and some financial assistance to all the business owners affected by the ugly actions of hoodlums and arsonists that hijacked the #EndSARS protests.
This was disclosed by Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu during his meeting with tenants and shop owners at Circle Mall in Lekki.
Speaking on his administration’s readiness to assist those affected by destruction in Circle Mall, Lekki, Governor Sanwo-Olu said the state would not leave the people to bear the pains alone, stressing that the government would assist them to return to their respective businesses.
Sanwo-Olu also asked the shop owners to reach out to the Lagos State Employment Trust Fund (LSETF) and urged them to make use of the opportunities being provided by the agency in assisting business people, especially small-scale business owners.
Recall that some hoodlums went on a rampage on Wednesday, October 21, after the EndSARS protests were hijacked, and looted property worth billions of naira at Circle Mall and also set parts of the building ablaze.
Following the recent looting and burning of several shops and stores at Circle Mall in Lekki by hoodlums due to the hijack of the EndSARS protests, Sanwo-Olu has promised to assist the tenants and shop owners at the mall for them to bounce back to business.
What you should know
- The Lagos State Government will give all business owners in the burnt Circle Mall tax breaks of PAYE. It has also appealed to the Federal Government to ensure that they get tax relief from the Federal Internal Revenue Services (FIRS).
- Victims of the Circle Mall will also be getting financial support, which will be in form of grant/loans to cushion the effect of the looting and destruction of their respective shops and stores.
- The grant support is a non-refundable financial support to the victims, as the affected businesses are not expected to pay back.
- The lending support would be in form of a loan; however, the Governor is in talks with some financial institutions to assist people with zero-interest loans.
Reactions of the business owners
Speaking earlier, the tenants at Circle Mall, thanked Governor Sanwo-Olu for showing empathy in the face of daunting challenges. They asked him to assist them financially so as to get back on their feet.
They also appealed to Lagos State Government to strengthen the security around Circle Mall to prevent repeated occurrences of the two attacks they had suffered in the last 13 months.
The Governor’s words to Lagosians
Governor Sanwo-Olu further exhorted everybody to embrace the reorientation of value systems and civil responsibility. He urged that everybody should be an agent of positive change in their community.
Reiterating his administration’s commitment to protecting lives and property in the state, Sanwo-Olu said that Lagos State would no longer tolerate hoodlums looting and destroying government and private businesses and properties.
He said that though Lagos State Government could stop people from moving into the state, people with criminal intentions were warned to go elsewhere before being smoked out by the government.
The Governor said that his government was ready to encourage people in Lagos for business, and would go the extra mile to protect businesses in the state.