Anambra Revenue Officials Who Manhandled Driver Arrested


By Adadareporters

The Anambra State revenue officials who were captured in a viral video manhandling a vehicle owner have been arrested.

Our correspondent reports that the video showed where the officials forcefully bundled the driver out of his vehicle, dumped him on the ground and drove his vehicle away. The video had attracted condemnation from the general public, including a voice clip saying ‘this is the revenue method Gov Charles Soludo promised in Anambra State’.

The state government, in a release signed by Soludo’s press secretary, Chris Aburime, identified the personnel as operatives of the state Unified Hybrid Enforcement Team (UHBET) acting on behalf of the Anambra State Internal Revenue Service (AiRS).

According to the statement, “While the less-than-one minute video did not show what transpired before the unfortunate dragging incident, swift investigation by AiRS has shown that the commercial driver, plying Onitsha/Edo State route, was stopped on the road, had his profile checked on the online portal and was found to owe N37,000. Then, as the defaulting driver attempted to escape, the UHBET personnel double-crossed him with a ‘Keke’ tricycle and rough-handled him.

“Although the UHBET has the mandate to enforce every revenue payment accrued from commercial transport operators plying the roads of Anambra State, its personnel are not supposed to do so in a violent way.

“It is regrettable that some members of the public have been circulating the video and wrongly insinuating that the state government authorized the actions of the misguided officers. No, Governor Charles Soludo did not and would never authorize such crude ways of engaging the public for whatever reason.”

Aburime said the state is ‘built on principles of law and order, human rights, fairness and empathy’, adding that the trending video ‘is absolutely unacceptable’.

The release added, “The actions captured in it do not in any way represent the approach of the state government or portray the engagement rules of the revenue service. Such behaviour stands in stark contrast to the responsible, caring, and humane philosophy that the Soludo government upholds.

“The Anambra State Government hereby dissociates itself entirely from the indecorous activities of the overzealous revenue officers and offer sincere apologies to the mistreated individual and the wider community of Ndi Anambra.

“Governor Soludo has ordered immediate action to address this situation. In response, the chairman of AiRS, Dr Greg Ezeilo, ordered a prompt, thorough investigation which has now led to the arrest of the offending officers in the viral video, and they are being held in police custody to account for their actions.”

To forestall recurrence, the statement added that, “The enforcement agencies of the Anambra State Internal Revenue Service, including ANJET and UHBET, will undergo proper retraining and reorientation programs. The goal is to ensure that every citizen’s interaction with government officials in Anambra State is characterized by respect, courtesy, and fairness.

“We recognize that tax collection is vital for the development of our great state, but it should never come at the expense of basic human dignity and decency.”


Adadainfo is an online newspaper reporting Nigerian news. Email: Phone: 08071790941

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