By NAOMI UZOR
The Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry, LCCI, has decried the rising level of receivables in the economy noting that many businesses are carrying huge receivables in their books putting some organisations at risk.
The President of LCCI, Mr Goodie Ibru, appealed to government at all levels to ensure the payment of outstanding debts so that various contractors and suppliers can carry on with their businesses.
“This is as much of a problem in the private sector as it is in the public sector. But the situation appears to be worse with the public sector transactions. There are instances where as a result of change of government or redeployment of officers in a particular ministry or agency, contractual obligations are disregarded with impunity.
“Many enterprises are on the verge of collapse because of high receivables. We therefore appeal to government at all levels and their various agencies to please ensure the payment of outstanding debts so that various contractors and suppliers can carry on with their businesses.
He added “We also similarly appeal to private sector organisations to always respect contractual agreements with their suppliers and contractors” he said. According to him, the standard of ethics in business have become a major cause to concern to the chamber as there are number of dimensions to this problem which include; smuggling, product faking and counterfeiting, under invoicing to evade duty payment, tax evasion, concealment of items in containers by importers, piracy of creative works and wanton violation of intellectual property rights. Other forms of ethical issues are in the areas of procurement by private and government institutions, especially extortion by officials of procurement desk in some of the institutions. Even service providers are not spared; this includes legal practitioners, accountants, consultants etc.
Many have lost valuable businesses because of this unwholesome practice as some are compelled to part with a percentage of their fees.