Prof. Ben Ayade, the Cross-River state has disclosed that he is currently awaiting an approval by the House of Assembly, in a bid to legalize street hawking.
Ayade revealed this while interacting with reporters at the Executive Chambers, Calabar, on Thursday, August 25, 2016.
According to him, it is difficult to send the hawkers away from the street due to their inability to rent a shop.
“You cannot tell a man not to sell his goods on the streets because he cannot rent a store, yet you tell the man not to steal.”
“Just provide a regulatory framework because to prohibit hawking is to tell a man that you don’t want him to eat.”
“I have sent the Hawking Rights Bill to the House of Assembly to provide a regulatory framework that will provide the right to hawk. We are making provisions for a hawkers’ corridor.”
“There must be a minimum age, you must be 18 and they must be seen to be properly dressed with reflective vests.”
“They must have a time zone of when they come out, so as to be able to make optimal sales because we don’t want them to constitute nuisance in the environment.”
“Prohibiting hawking is to tell a man that you don’t want to give him food, and you don’t also want him to steal, it is unfair.”
The governor, clearly concerned about the well-being of the street hawkers, said the challenges faced by the traders isn’t about how to make sales alone, but how to stay alive.
“They have a right to determine how to live as long as it is within the ambit of the law. So, we are repealing anything that prohibits hawking in the state”, he said.