Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami has expressed that no state has the power to lay claim to the collection of value-added tax (VAT) in the country.
Malami stated this on Friday, during an interview with Channels Television.
Speaking on the ongoing tussle between some states and the Federal Inland Revenue Service, Malami stated that the collection of VAT in the country is under the exclusive legislative list.
He added that only the national assembly has the power to make laws on VAT.
“A lot has precluded the state from collecting value-added tax. One, generally speaking, as you rightly know, the issue of the value-added tax is an issue on the exclusive legislative list,” Malami said.
“And the implication of being in exclusive legislative list matter is that only the national assembly can legislate on it. The question that you may perhaps wish to address your mind on is whether there exists any national legislation that has conferred the power on the state to collect VAT. And my answer is ‘no’.
“In the absence of a law passed by the national assembly in that direction, no state can have a valid claim to collection of value-added tax.
“The responsibility, right and constitutional powers to legislate on collection of VAT is exclusively and constitutionally vested in the national assembly and not in the state.
“Where the national assembly has not passed any law in that regard authorising the state to collect VAT, then it goes without saying that no state can arrogate unto itself the powers to collect VAT.”