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Court Stops Delta Govt, Says LGA Entitled To Collect Signage, Ads Taxes, Levies

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A High Court sitting in Warri has held that Local Government Councils and not Delta State Government has the  constitutional right to demand and collect Signage and Advertisement taxes and levies from individuals and corporate bodies.

The court gave the ruling on Friday 14, January 2022 in Suit No. W/190/2020 brought by Comfort Edematie (Trading under the name and style of Cedar House) as Claimant and the Attorney General of Delta state and the Delta state government

In an originating summon, the claimant was jointly and severally seeking a Declaration that by virtue of the Taxes and Levies (Approved list for collection) Act, Cap T2 Laws of the Federation, 2004 and the doctrine of covering the field, the Delta state structure for Signage and Advertisement Agency Law 2015 to the extent that it vest on the Delta state government the power to Legislate, impose, demand and collect Taxes and Levies outside those specified in (part 11 for collection by state government in the levies (Approved list for collection) Act, Cap. T2, Laws of the Federation, 2004 thereby contrary to paragraphs 1 and 2 of the Fourth Schedule to the 1999 Constitution is unconstitutional, illegal, null and void.

The Originating summons further sort an order setting aside the demand notice served on the Claimant for the payment of Tariff known as outdoor Signage and Advertisement revenue by the Delta State Government.

After adopting the written addresses of counsels from both parties, Hon. Justice Ejiro Emudianohwo of the Warri High Court 3, adjourned the matter for judgment to 14 January, 2022.

Delivering her judgment, she stated that the Defendants do not have power to demand or collect taxes and Levies for signage & Advertisement from individuals or corporate bodies.

“It is the duty of the local government Council as stated in the 1999 Constitution. It is the Local government council that is constitutionally empowered to collect the revenue”, the court ruled.

F.J. Atie, Esq. represented the Claimant throughout the hearing.

The same judgment against the Delta state government was also given by Hon. Justice Emudianohwo same day in suit No. W/189/2020 between Regenix Health Care Services Ltd. V A.G Delta state and Delta state government.

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