Published On: Thu, Oct 28th, 2021

Delta Private School Owners Drag Okowa, Others To Court Over Multiple Taxes, Illegal Levies

LAGOS OCTOBER 28TH (URHOBOTODAY)-Proprietors of private schools, under the aegis of the National Association of Proprietors of Private Schools (NAPPS), Delta State chapter, have sued the state government at the High Court of Justice, Otor-Udu, Udu Local Government Area over multiple taxes.

Chairman of the school owners, Deacon Monday Ifoghere, who led his colleagues to the court said besides multiple taxes, other agencies of the state government have been collecting illegal levies from them, thereby compounding the hardships.

Joined in the case as defendants with Suit No: OUCH/114/2021 are the Governor of Delta State, Commissioner of Finance, Commissioner for Secondary Education, Commissioner for Basic Education, Delta State Board of Internal Revenue, Signage and Advertisement Agency and the Attorney General of the state.

They’re asking the court to determine whether the Delta State Government’s consolidated revenue demands, which include levies for boreholes, private institution application and registration fees, operational levies, renewal of license levies, and the physical and infrastructural development levies, are in tandem with the tax and levies approved for collection by the state government under Part 11 of the Schedule to the Taxes of Levies (Approve list for collection ) Act, 2004 and Part 11 of the Second Schedule to the 1999 constitution (as amended).

 

Other grievances of the school owners tendered before the court are levied for waste disposal, signage and billboard.

The group averred that since private schools were solely for educational activities and not business outfits for any serious revenue generation, the multiple levies and taxes were unnecessary.

The school owners also prayed the court to declare that private school owners should not have any dealings with the Delta State Board of Internal Revenue or its agents.

https://tribuneonlineng.com/private-school-proprietors-sue-delta-govt-over-multiple-taxes/

Fielding questions from journalists on Wednesday, Deacon Ifoghere said the government was overtaxing the school owners through its numerous agencies.

“They should not see us as business outfits. We ought to be given subvention by the state government and not what they are trying to do now.

“How can school owners pay for a borehole that we sank ourselves and many of these monies they are demanding are very exorbitant.

“They want us to pay for infrastructural development as high as N350, 000. Tenement rate and waste management are other of their demands. Schools are vulnerable in Delta.

“We want the court to interpret which one we should pay. We have complained to the commissioner and they promised to speak to these agencies, but the more we complain, the more they increase the levies,” he lamented.

The case could not come up for hearing on Wednesday due to the ongoing biennial conference of the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA).

It was gathered that the Delta State Government recently introduced a new regime of taxes and levies for registered private schools in the state which NAPPS has described as being in tandem with existing statutes.

NAPPS is therefore praying the court to restrict the government from collecting levies for boreholes, private institutions, application and registration fees, operational levies, renewal of license levies and physical and infrastructural development levies.

Other levies they declared illegal are levies for waste disposal, mobile advert fees and signage fees.

Tribune

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