The Lagos State Government has applied to the Appeal Court, Abuja Division, to join it as a co-respondent in the VAT matter between Rivers State and the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS).
The application by Lagos State on Friday, came as FIRS filed an appeal at the appellate court to challenge the recent judgment of the Federal High Court, Port Harcourt, on VAT,
TG News reported that the lower court in Rivers held that the Federal Government revenue agency lacked no power to collect VAT and Personal Income Tax in Rivers State or in any other state of the federation.
When the appeal by FIRS praying for stay of execution of the trial court’s judgment came up at the Appeal Court this Friday, the Attorney General of Lagos State, Moyosore Onigbanjo (SAN), told the appellate court of the state’s government application to be joined as a party in the appeal.
Onigbanjo prayed the court to first take Lagos State’s application for joinder before considering FIRS’ application for stay of execution.
He was countered by the counsel for the FIRS, Mahmoud Magaji (SAN), who argued that their application for stay of execution should take precedence over the application for joinder.
Relying on the case of Pam V. Mohammed, Magaji, contended that the court can restrict itself to the business of the day.
The Court of Appeal, after listening to submissions from all the parties, stood down the matter for the ruling.
Rivers State was represented by its Attorney General, Zacchaeus Adangor, and E. C. Nkala (SAN) during the proceeding while Tijjani Gazali (SAN) represented the Attorney General of the Federation.
Rivers State Commissioner for Finance, Isaac Kamalu, and the Deputy Director & State Coordinator of Rivers, Edo, and Delta Zone, FIRS, Hamisu Mohammed Ibrahim, were also in court.