Nigeria

Lagos asks to be joined in FIRS’s appeal against VAT ruling

The Lagos State Government on Friday filed an application for joinder in the appeal filed by the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), challenging the judgment of the Federal high court sitting in port harcourt, which declared that the Rivers State government and not the FIRS should collect Valued Added Tax (VAT) and Personal Income Tax in the state.

The Lagos State Government on Friday filed an application for joinder in the appeal filed by the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), challenging the judgment of the Federal high court sitting in Port Harcourt, which declared that the Rivers State government and not the FIRS should collect Valued Added Tax (VAT) and Personal Income Tax in the state.

In the application filed at the Court of Appeal, Abuja Division, the attorney general of Lagos state, told the court that it is in the interest of justice that Lagos state be made a party to the suit.

Newsmen had reported that the Lagos State House of Assembly on Wednesday, 9th September, passed the state’s Value Added Tax (VAT) bill, after which a copy was transmitted to the governor for assent.

The development followed a Federal High Court ruling in Port Harcourt, which declared that the FIRS has no power to collect VAT and Personal Income Tax in Rivers State.

The court had also issued an order of perpetual injunction restraining the FIRS and the Attorney General of the Federation, both first and second defendants in the suit, from collecting and intimidating residents of Rivers State to pay to FIRS, personal income tax and Value Added Tax.

However, when the FIRS appeal against the judgement came up for hearing on Friday, the Attorney General of Lagos State, Moyosore Onigbanjo (SAN) informed the court of their application for the Lagos State Government to be joined as a party in the appeal.

Lagos argued that the application for joinder be taken first before FIRS’ application for stay of execution.

However, Counsel for the FIRS, Mahmoud Magaji (SAN) argued that their application for stay of execution should take precedence over the application for joinder.

Majagi, relying on the case of Pam V. Mohammed, argued that the court can restrict itself to the business of the day.

But, after listening to submissions from all the parties, the court stood down the matter for the ruling on the application for joinder.

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