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Continue to pay VAT to us – FIRS tells taxpayers in spite of Rivers court judgement
The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) has directed taxpayers in the country to continue paying value-added tax (VAT) to the agency in spite of a court judgement which ruled that states, and not the federal government are constitutionally empowered to collect the consumption tax.
In a statement released on Sunday August 22 by FIRS spokesperson, Abdullahi Ahmad said defaulters will face penalties for failing to do so.
According to the federal agency, they have appealed the judgement and also obtained a stay of execution which the Rivers state government is aware of.
“The attention of the Federal Inland Revenue Service(FIRS) has been drawn to the trending report that, on 19/08/2021, the Government of Rivers State took steps to enact a Value Added Tax Law for Rivers State following the Judgment of the Federal High Court Port Harcourt Division on 9th August 2021 in Suit No: CS/149/2020.
“The suit was about who has the constitutional duty for the collection of VAT and Personal income tax in Rivers State.
“We wish to inform the general public that, before the above-mentioned steps taken by the Government of Rivers State, FIRS had lodged an appeal against the above judgment and had also filed an application for stay of execution of the judgment as well asking the Court for an injunction pending determination of the appeal.
“All parties to the suit are aware that both applications were heard on the 19th and 20th August 2021 and are awaiting the decision of the Court.
“Given that the Court of Appeal is yet to rule on the Appeal from the Judgement of Federal High Court and that the Federal High Court is yet to deliver a ruling on FIRS’s applications for stay of execution and injunction, members of the public are advised to continue to comply with their Value Added Tax obligations until the matter is resolved by the appellate courts.”
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