VAT Dispute: Lagos Reacts, Sends Strong Message to Northern Governors
- The Lagos state government reacted to the recent position of the Northern governors on VAT collection controversy
- Gbenga Omotosho, the commissioner for information and strategy disclosed that the Supreme Court is the only arm that can settle the VAT dispute
- Omotosho noted that it is wrong for anybody to give an administrative convenience in place of constitutionality, saying the court can answer the question better
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Reactions have continued to trail the Value Added Tax (VAT) collection in the country.
The Lagos state government has said only the Supreme Court has the right to settle the question of whether states or the federal government should collect the Value Added Tax.
The Punch reports that the commissioner for information and strategy, Gbenga Omotosho, made this statement on Tuesday, September 28, in reaction to the statement made by the Northern Governors Forum, rejecting the collection of VAT by states.
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“I think what the Northern Governors are trying to do is to confuse administrative convenience with constitutionality. First, let me say that they have a right to their opinion; it is all a matter of free speech. But beyond the debate, there is the constitutionality of it which the Supreme Court is being asked to make a pronouncement on.
“In other words, the Supreme Court only has the right to settle the question of who should collect the VAT. The question is not whether it is convenient or not; because if something is not convenient, that should not take away the constitutionality of it."
Recall that the Northern Elders Forum, (NEF), described earlier the raging VAT controversy in the country as a wake-up call for northern governors, a report by Vanguard also indicates.
Presidency reveals President Buhari’s final decision on VAT controversy
Meanwhile, Legit.ng had earlier reported that the Nigerian presidency has said that President Muhammadu Buhari will respect the final verdict on the issue of Value Added Tax (VAT) as decided by the Supreme Court.
The presidential spokesman, Femi Adesina, made the disclosure while speaking during an interview on Arise TV.
Adesina noted that though the case may drag up to the Supreme Court, the Nigerian leader would respect the rule of law.