A group under the auspices of Coalition of Concerned AMAC Citizens, have queried the proposed harmonised revenue collection in the Federal Capital Territory.
They made the call during a peaceful protest at the Area 10 Secretariat of the Abuja Municipal Area Council AMAC, in Abuja.
The protesters carried placards with inscriptions such as; “AMAC is not for sale”, FCTA do not usurp AMAC”, “FCTA obey court judgements”, among others.
Mr Adamu Damihi, Leader of the group, said it was important for area councils to generate and collect revenue themselves to run their affairs.
He added that it was unconstitutional for FCT Inland Revenue Services, to take up revenue collection on behalf of the area councils, as it negates the practice in other states.
He added that they registeed their grieviances based on information that the FCTA had consulted the FCT Inland Revenue Services, to take over the collection of all the revenue that is expected to be collected by area councils.
He further stressed that it was wrong and unconstitutional because area councils are expected to collect revenue as series of court judgements on this issue had been in favor of the council.
He however told the public to debunk the rumors on issues of area council chairmen signing an agreement to that effect because the executive arm cannot enter an agreement without the legislature, adding that the legislators in AMAC and the Executive Council Members are not aware that the other chairmen signed the agreement.
Speaker, AMAC legislative Chamber, Mr Matthew Danjuma, who received the protesters, called for calm while assuring of the council’s commitment to get to the root of the issue.
Mr Danjama assured that as the speaker of AMAC, they will do everything within the ambit of the law, to meet with the Chairman of AMAC and the Permanent Secretary of FCTA to discuss and feed them back accordingly.
The Permanent Secretary, FCT Administration, Mr Olusade Adesola, had on June 21, announced a new harmonisation and standardization procedure of revenue collection in the FCT.
He said that after series of stakeholders meeting and accord reached at a retreat in Akure in May, 2023, the stakeholders resolved to eliminate double taxation and gangsterism in revenue collection in the nation’s capital.
The retreat according to him had core stakeholders’ from the FCTA, FCT Area Councils and FCT Internal Revenue Services, among others in attendance.
Garry Ochigbo, Edited By Grace Namiji
Written by: Bukky Alabi
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