Rivers state governor, Nyesom Wike, has threatened to seal off Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) offices over controversy sorrounding value-added tax (VAT) payment within the state.
Wike, who stated this during an interactive session with corporate organisations in Port Harcourt on Wednesday, vowed to execute his threat if FG continues to “bully” organisations within the state over the collection of value-added tax (VAT).
Rivers state and Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) have been at loggerheads over payment of Value-added tax (VAT) payment within the state.
In August, a court had issued an order restraining FIRS from collecting VAT in Rivers and directed the state government to take charge of the collection.
The judgment led Wike to sign a bill on value-added tax (VAT) collection into law.
Reacting, Governor Wike said: “An agency of government cannot dictate to a state government. If they will ever dictate but not to a state like Rivers because certainly, we will not allow it,
“People say that ‘let heaven not fall’, sometimes I believe that it is important that heaven should come down so everybody will rest.
“We have challenged it (VAT collection in court), and we have no apologies to anybody. And the problem in this country is that no one wants to come out.
“And all these bullyings by FIRS…they should mind the state they are bullying, they should be very careful. You don’t bully states like us.
“I have the political will to do a lot of things. I am not one of those governors that will shy away from this or that. If they continue to bully us… all their offices in the state, I will take them. You should know those that you bully, not states like us… don’t try it.
“I will not be a party to injustice, but let history be that some of us stood up and challenged the illegality. Until we leave May 29, 2023, I will continue to challenge what I think is not right.”