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N600m taxes: Rivers revenue agency blocks NDDC office

N600m taxes: Rivers revenue agency blocks NDDC office

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Chukwudi Akasike, Port Harcourt

The Rivers State Internal Revenue Service has said that its men temporarily blocked the main entrance to the corporate headquarters of the Niger Delta Development Commission because it owed the state government N600m in unpaid taxes.

The Executive Chairman, RIRS, Mr. Adoage Norteh, told journalists in Port Harcourt on Thursday that the unpaid taxes dated back to 2013, adding that the commission did not respond to all entreaties from the revenue agency for the settlement of the debt.

The state revenue agency had on Wednesday temporarily blocked the main gate to the NDDC with a vehicle, a development that stopped workers, including top officials of the commission, from gaining access to their offices.

It was gathered that the blockade was, however, removed after some unidentified important personalities intervened in the matter.

Speaking with journalists on Thursday, Norteh said that the temporary picketing of the NDDC corporate headquarters was aimed at ensuring that the commission did the needful by paying taxes to the state.

He stated, “The NDDC owed the Rivers State Government withholding tax, that is taxes they withheld from vendors. They have individual vendors and enterprises. The ones for limited liability companies of such taxes go to the Federal Inland Revenue Service.

“We have been on it for a very long time. They have not responded to any entreaty. We have gone round to get them to do it. They will not. That is where the trouble came from. The tax we are talking about dates back to 2013.”

The RIRS executive chairman explained that the issue had nothing to do with politics, adding that the commission was expected to pay taxes without being forced to do so.

Norteh added, “We are saying just pay all the money, unless they are saying the reason they didn’t pay was political. I don’t understand. I can’t explain. It has nothing to do with politics. I am not a politician.”

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