The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) has said it would urgently appeal the judgement of a Port Harcourt court that prohibits it from collecting Value Added Tax (VAT) and Personal Income Tax (PIT).
In an exclusion response to queries by this newspaper yesterday, director, communications and liaison department at the FIRS, Dr Abdullahi Ahmad said the agency has resolved to challenge the decision and would do so urgently.
“We are appealing the matter immediately,” Dr Ahmad said in a response to the question on whether the FIRS would appeal the judgement.
The federal government generated N512 billion from VAT in the second quarter of 2021. If that order stands, government would be losing a substantial part of its tax revenue to Rivers State government, considering the number of private and public sectors workers in the state and the number of companies, mostly oil firms.
The Federal High Court in Port Harcourt, presided over by Justice Stephen Dalyop Pam had banned the FIRS from collecting Value Added Tax (VAT) and Personal Income Tax (PIT) in Rivers State, saying that the Rivers State government is the right authority to collect VAT and PIT henceforth in the state.
The court also granted perpetual injunction, restraining the revenue agency and the Attorney General of the Federation – first and second defendants in the suit – from collecting, demanding, threatening and intimidating residents of Rivers State to pay to FIRS, personnel income tax and Value Added Tax.