VAT: Samuel Ortom Supports Lagos, Rivers In Case Against FIRS

Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State has shown his support for his counterparts in Lagos and Rivers states amid moves to make the collection of value-added tax (VAT) exclusive to states.

The governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike, signed into law the bill on Value Added Tax (VAT) collection in the state.

This was days after a Federal High Court issued an order restraining the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) from collecting the tax in the state.

Babajide Sanwo-Olu, Lagos governor, followed suit on Friday.

However, the court of appeal in Abuja ordered both Rivers and Lagos states to maintain status quo over the collection of VAT, pending the determination of an appeal filed by the FIRS.

Ortom, who spoke with journalists on Friday, said although he supports Wike and Sanwo-Olu, he would embrace the decision of the court on VAT collection no matter the outcome.

Ortom said he had already directed the Benue State Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice to study the law and tell him its implications.

“I don’t think there is anything wrong in embracing the law as long as it conforms with the constitution, whether it affects states positively or negatively. I support the governors of Rivers and Lagos states for what they are doing.

“Anything that is in tandem with the rule of law I will accept, but if anyone thinks otherwise, the best thing to do is to go to court. I heard they are in court, and if the case is decided otherwise by the Supreme Court, we will accept it,” the governor said.

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