VAT: Gombe urges Lagos, Rivers to reconsider
Gombe State has urged state governments to be their brother’s keeper amid the recent disagreement over sharing the Value Added Tax (VAT) generated across the country.
The state made the plea after Governors Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos and Nyesom Wike of Rivers made a move to start the collection of VAT in their states.
Speaking on Tuesday at the opening of Technical Workshop on development of the Medium-Term Sector Strategy (MTSS) for the state, the state’s Commissioner for Finance and Economic Development, Muhammad Magaji, said Lagos, Rivers and other states should consider the financial reality of other states.
Magaji stated that only three states in the country can survive with its internally generated revenue.
“The VAT issue will have adverse effects not only on Gombe state but almost all the states of the federation. I was part of the discussion a few weeks ago by all commissioners of finance across the country,” Magaji said.
“The realisation was that only Lagos, Rivers and probably Delta states would be able to pull through without this VAT being administered centrally, and it is our appeal that we all put sentiments behind and work towards a federation that is one, by being our brothers keepers and ensuring that what is pull together at the center is distributed to be able to balance resources across the country.”
“Don’t forget that the oil producing states collect only 13 percent derivation, so if you say every state will take whatever resources it has, that it means we are starting a very dangerous trajectory that will not augur well for the federation called Nigeria.”