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Northern Governors, Rulers Seek End To Open Grazing, Wait For Supreme Court On VAT

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Northern Governors, Rulers Seek End To Open Grazing, Wait For Supreme Court On VAT

Northern governors and traditional leaders are waiting for a ruling of the Supreme Court before taking a decision on the issue of Value Added Tax ( VAT).

But the governors and rulers want the Federal Government to expedite action on the establishment of the National Livestock Transformation Programme as a springboard in transiting from the open grazing system widely practised in the North. The Northern Governors’ Forum (NGF) and traditional rulers at a meeting regretted the ugly trend of drug consumption amongst the teeming youth and called on all levels of governments and communities to rise to the occasion by stemming the tide.

The resolutions issued by the chairman of NGF and Governor of Plateau State, Mr Simon Bako Lalong called on government agencies to check the trend.

READ ALSO: Northern Governors Meet Over Insecurity, VAT, Others

“The Forum calls on agencies to live up to their responsibility, traditional rulers are to equally mobilize their various communities in checkmating the ugly trend of criminality in their domains.

“The Forum decried the high level of conspiracies being perpetrated by some judicial officers in releasing/granting bail to arrested criminals. This attitude sabotages the fight against criminality, therefore, the need to develop good and robust intelligence mechanism amongst states was identified as a panacea.”

The Traditional Rulers Councils appreciated the efforts made by the NSGF in addressing the key areas of challenges facing the Northern states and expressed willingness, solidarity and collaboration with the governors’ in addressing the challenges particularly the issue of security.

It was resolved that perpetrators of crimes be dealt with irrespective of their status in society.

The NGF considered the ongoing national debate on the collection of VAT, saying that as responsible leaders, they were constrained by the fact that the matter is sub judice.

They said the judgement of the Federal High Court calls to question the constitutionality of VAT, withholding tax, education tax, Niger Delta Development Commission, National Information Technology Development Agency, 13% derivation, National Economic Development Council and many other levies currently collected by the Federal Government’s Federal Inland Revenue Service.

It noted that Rivers and Lagos State had enacted their VAT laws and the Southern Governors Forum have expressed support for this course of action, stressing that VAT is being confused by these state governments as a sales tax.

It also noted that if every state enacted its VAT law, multiple taxations would result in increases in prices of goods and services and collapse in interstate trade, saying that VAT is not a production tax like excise, but terminal tax which is paid by the ultimate consumer.

READ ALSO: Southern Governors Meet, Insist On VAT Collection, Anti-open Grazing Law, Others

The forum noted that the reason Lagos accounted for our 50% Vat collection is that most of the telecommunication companies, banks, manufacturing and other trading activities have their headquarters.

It agreed that “Until and unless the Supreme Court pronounces judgement on the substantive matter between Rivers State and Federal Government, the matter is sub judice and the Northern States Governors Forum would respect this.”

 

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We Teargassed Hoodlums Not ENDSARS Protesters – Police

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We Teargassed Hoodlums Not ENDSARS Protesters - Police

Amid allegations of indiscriminate shooting during the protest of Wednesday, the Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Hakeem Odumosu, has said that his officers only fired teargas at hoodlums at the Lekki Toll-Gate and not #EndSARSMemorial protesters.

The policemen who arrived at the venue of the protest in large numbers on Wednesday morning reportedly fired teargas canisters, brutalised and arrested several other protesters at the venue.

But Mr Odumosu, who addressed journalists, claimed that those present after 10:00 a.m. were hoodlums, as “activists had informed us that their activity will start by 8:00 a.m. and last till 10:00 a.m.”

“They had an agreement with us that they will be having a car procession, which they are done with and have left,” the police boss said.

He claimed the activists informed the police that other persons seen at the venue after the stipulated time were not part of them. Mr Odumosu also said the “hoodlums” were out for destruction and to steal, adding that dangerous materials were found in their possession.

READ ALSO: Police Teargas EndSARS Protesters At Lekki Tollgate

“They told us that they finished their activity around 10:00 a.m., adding that whoever was found still hanging around is not part of them,” Mr Odumosu maintained.

“Those you can see around now are hoodlums who want to steal and cause destruction. We found knives, cutlasses and other dangerous materials in their(hoodlums) possession.

“Those cannot be protesters but hoodlums, and that is why they were chased away so that peaceful citizens can go about their lawful businesses.”

It was also reported how officers fired teargas canisters into moving commuter buses in Lagos.

Earlier, a young man Adedotun Clement who identified himself as an Uber driver was brutalised by the officers.

A video of the moment captured by Arise TV saw the officers manhandle and pepper-spray Mr Clement as they tried to force him into a police van.

 

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Police Teargas EndSARS Protesters At Lekki Tollgate

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Police Teargas EndSARS protesters At Lekki Tollgate

Some EndSARS protesters at the Lekki Tollgate, Lagos State, were teargassed by the police on Wednesday.

The protesters, who gathered for the EndSARS memorial protest at Lekki Tollgate, Lagos State, were dispersed by men of the police force.

The demonstrators had gathered to call for justice for protesters who were allegedly shot dead on October 20, 2020

The EndSARS protests which were held in October 2020 were against the activities of the now-disbanded Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), a unit of the Nigeria Police Force accused of brutality.

READ ALSO: Pro-Buhari Protesters Say Nobody Died At Lekki Tollgate

However, on Wednesday the peaceful protest was disrupted by police officers who fired teargas at the youths.
The protesters scampered for safety as they chanted “EndSARS”.

 

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Pro-Buhari Protesters Say Nobody Died At Lekki Tollgate

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Pro-Buhari Protesters Say Nobody Died At Lekki Tollgate

Protesters loyal to President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday converged on the Unity Fountain in Abuja, saying “nobody died at Lekki tollgate” in Lagos.

The protesters who were conveyed to the venue on a bus, held up placards stating,”#EndSarsProtest; Lekki shooting was a hoax”, and ”Nobody died at Lekki tollgate”.

On October 20, 2020, soldiers reportedly opened fire on protesters campaigning against police brutality at Lekki tollgate.

READ ALSO: No Massacre Of Lekki Protesters In 2020 – Mohammed

While some reports, including civil society groups say some protesters were killed in the attack, the federal government has disputed this account.

Lai Mohammed, minister of information, on Wednesday described the Lekki incident as a ”phantom massacre”.

Nigerians poured into the streets in Lagos, Abuja and other places on Wednesday to mark the first anniversary of the #EndSARS protest.

 

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