Governor Ayodele Fayose has kicked against plans by the Federal Government to increase Value Added Tax, VAT, from the current five per cent to 10 per cent, describing it as insensitive to the plight of Nigerians, who he said are suffering from the bad economic policies of the President Mohammadu Buhari led All Progressives Congress, APC, government.
Fayose, in a statement issued by his media aide, Lere Olayinka, said “Nigerians are suffering and the little that they have, federal government is planning to take back through VAT increment, this is wickedness.”
He further said, “Under three months, electricity tariff was increased despite epileptic power supply, N50 stamp duty was imposed on bank customers for money received into their accounts via electronic transfer, cash and cheques; petrol is being sold for as high as N400 per litre and now they are talking about increasing VAT to 10 per cent, this is the height of insensitivity to the plight of Nigerians.”
Fayose asked, “How can government be considering 100 per cent increment in VAT when businesses are folding up, prices of essential commodities have skyrocketed, millions of Nigerians are losing their jobs and those who are still employed are no longer getting paid regularly?”
The governor said, “For even contemplating the increment of VAT at this difficult time shows that the Buhari-led government does not care about the welfare of the citizens and only God will save the poor masses from the hands of this government.”
He advised the government to seek help from experts on how best to revive the country’s economy, adding that; “As at today, the Buhari-led government is yet to show that it has any clue to the revival of the economy.”
Last Thursday in Lagos, the Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo disclosed that the current five per cent VAT rate in the country was very low, stating that the government would increase the taxpayer base this year.