VAT: Yahaya Bello reacts to court ruling

Yahaya Bello

The Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello, has said states should be their “brother’s keeper” by supporting each other.

Bello, who was reacting to the move by some states to make the collection of Value Added Tax, VAT, exclusive, said God did not create people equally.

Kingsley Fanwo, Kogi State’s Commissioner for Information and Communication, disclosed the governor’s position during an interview on Arise Television.

Nyesom Wike, Governor of Rivers, had assented to the VAT bill on August 20, after a Federal High Court ordered a restraint on the Federal Inland Revenue Services, FIRS, from collecting tax in the state.

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Also, the Lagos State House of Assembly on Thursday passed a similar bill before passing it to Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu for his assent.

However, Fanwo disclosed that Governor Bello had said Kogi would not be part of those insisting on having VAT to themselves.

Fanwo accused those insisting on VAT of being insensitive and self-centred.

He said, “This call shows that some of our leaders are insensitive, self-centred and trying to make policies that will further divide the country.

“Kogi is bordered by about 10 states of the federation and a gateway to the north, south, to everywhere. And you know that thousands of vehicles transverse the state on a daily basis.

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It’s the mineral capital of Nigeria. When you look at our advantages, we should even be at the forefront of fighting for VAT to be completely retained in the state.

“The position of Bello on this is very clear: we will not jump on that bandwagon to call for the retention of VAT completely in the state. We are not created equally, and God that created us did not give us equal potentials, and we have to support one another.”

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