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Sanwo-Olu signs Lagos VAT Bill into law

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THE Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu has signed the Value Added Tax (VAT) Bill into law 46 hours after it was passed by the state house of assembly.

Commissioner for Information and Strategy Gbenga Omotosho made this known in a statement on Friday.

He said the governor signed the bill for a law that would impose and charge VAT on certain goods and services in the state.

The law empowers the state to charge VAT at the rate of six per cent on the value of goods and services.

Omotosho said Lagos State Internal Revenue Service (LSIRS) had been empowered to administer and implement the law and account for money collected in accordance with the law.

According to the law, revenue accruing from VAT would be shared on a ratio of 75 per cent to 25 per cent between the state government and its local government council areas.

There have been controversies over VAT after a Port Harcourt Federal High Court, in its judgment last month, held that the Rivers State Government had the powers to collect VAT within its territory.

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The judgement, which was already being challenged at the Court of Appeal, has since pitched the FIRS against Rivers State Government, which vowed on Wednesday to enforce the judgement by beginning VAT collection this month.

Although there are concerns that the furore the judgement has created might be sending the wrong signals to investors, some Nigerians believe that it is laying the foundation for fiscal federalism.

 

Vincent Ufuoma is a reporter with The ICIR. He is a lover of God, truth, knowledge and justice.

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