Kayode Fayemi, Governor of Ekiti State, has lamented about the tax system in Nigeria, describing it as “problematic” and “confusing”.
Governor Fayemi said this while discussing the topical issue of Value Added Tax (VAT) in an interview on Sunday.
A Federal High Court sitting in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, had last month restrained the FIRS from collecting VAT and Personal Income Tax (PIT) following litigation instituted by the Rivers State government, ruling that the state should take charge of the collection.
Subsequently, the Rivers and Lagos houses of assembly passed domesticated VAT bills, which have been signed into law by governors Nyesom Wike and Babajide Sanwo-Olu respectively.
However, the Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja on 10 September ordered Rivers State to maintain status quo on the collection of VAT pending the determination of an appeal that was lodged before it by the FIRS.
Speaking on the issue, Fayemi, who is also the Chairman of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum, said the governors are waiting for the decision of the Supreme Court over VAT collection.
He added that the governors’ forum is currently looking at the issues and consulting on the implications of the collection on state governments.
“For us, at NGF, this is an issue we are looking at both legally and policy-wise. We are asking our experts to help us look at the implications for states,” Governor Fayemi said on Arise News.
“Our take is that the supreme court should accelerate decision on this so that we have clarity over who should be in charge of VAT – whether FIRS or states.
“We will wait for the supreme court to have a decision on this.
“The important thing is that our tax system is problematic, confusing and contradictory, and we need to do a lot more to begin to clarify things. So that we can have more efficient ways of collecting taxes.”