The decision of the Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja on September 10, ordering all parties that had submitted themselves before the court to maintain status quo ante bellum pending the hearing of an application seeking to stay the judgment of the Federal High Court which restrained FIRS from collecting VAT in Rivers State has not gown down with the Rivers State Government, prompting an action at the Supreme Court.
In a suit filed on Tuesday, the Rivers State government is asking the Supreme Court to nullify Appeal Court’s ‘stay of execution order’ on VAT collection.
Recall that, Justice Stephen Pam of the Federal High Court in Port Harcourt had on August 9, ruled that the Rivers State government and not the Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS, had the right to collect VAT and personal income tax in the state.
The judge also restrained the attorney general of the federation and FIRS from collecting VAT in Rivers State and directed the state government to go on and collect the taxes.
However, this ruling was challenged at the Appeal Court, which on September 10, ordered all parties to maintain status quo before the ruling of the Federal High Court pending the hearing of an application seeking to stay the judgment which restrained FIRS from collecting VAT in Rivers State, but the Rivers State Government is insisting that the Appeal Court erred and wants the Supreme Court to reverse the September 10 order.