Lagos to assist looted, vandalised businesses

The Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has pledged to assist the tenants and shop owners at the Circle Mall in Lekki, whose shops and stores were recently looted and razed by hoodlums.

Hoodlums had earlier looted property worth billions of naira at Circle Mall and also set parts of the building ablaze.

The Governor was quoted as making the promise in a press statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Gboyega Akosile, on Monday.

The statement was titled, ‘Circle mall looting: Sanwo-Olu promises tax break, financial support for business owners’.

Sanwo-Olu was quoted as speaking on Sunday during a condolence visit and meeting with tenants and shop owners at the Mall in Lekki.

Sanwo-Olu said, “Lagos State Government will give tax break and some financial assistance to all the business owners affected by the ugly incident.”

Sanwo-Olu was quoted as saying, “Lagos State Government will not leave the people to bear the pains alone. The government will assist them to return to their respective businesses.

“Lagos State Government will give all business owners in the burnt Circle Mall tax break of PAYE and also appealed to the Federal Government to ensure that they get tax relief from the Federal Internal Revenue Services.”

Sanwo-Olu said that “the State Government will give victims of the Circle Mall financial support, which will be in form of grant or loans to cushion the effect of the looting and destruction of their respective shops and stores.

“The grant support is non-refundable financial support to the victims. The affected businesses are not expected to pay back while the lending support would be in form of a loan.”

The governor said that he is “already discussing with some financial institutions to assist people with zero-interest loans”.

Sanwo-Olu also asked the shop owners to reach out to the Lagos State Employment Trust Fund and urged them to make use of the opportunities being provided by the agency in assisting people who are in business, especially small scale businesses.

Speaking earlier, the tenants at Circle Mall, appealed to Lagos State Government to strengthen the security around the Circle Mall to prevent future occurrences of the two attacks they suffered in the last 13 months.

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