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Lagos ‘agberos’ illegal tax collection stifles business

Joyce Bailey is a street vendor at Oshodi market in Lagos. A typical micro business owner with a capital base of N70,000 ($161), Bailey sells clothes and makes, on average, N1,500 in profit each day.

However, Bailey’s profit is eroded by multiple levies forced on her by notorious Lagos tax collectors, who have threatened her and taken her stock when she refused to pay. 

“I used to pay five or six of these taxes every day. Now, I pay up to eight. I spend nearly N1,200 on different faceless groups,” says Bailey.

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