NIPOST and FIRS have been at loggerhead over the collection of Stamp duty

Adebayo Obajemu

The last has not been heard of the disagreement between NIPOST and FIRS, as Postal Service (NIPOST) has reacted to claims by the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) that it is operating an illegal Stamp Duty Account.

Denying the FIRS’s submission, NIPOST said the former’s claim is false and made to misinform and mislead members of the public.

This disclosure was via it’s official Twitter handle, made through a series of tweet on Saturday, August 9, 2020.

In its statement, NIPOST said that the account was opened by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) under the Treasury Single Account (TSA) in consultation with the office of Accountant General of the Federation, in the name of NIPOST Stamp Duties Collection Account when CBN gave instruction to Deposit Banks (DMB) to commence the deduction of N50 stamp duties from bank customers accounts.

The statement from NIPOST reads, ‘’The Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST) attention has been drawn to a publication by the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) that NIPOST operated an illegal stamp duty account. According to the publication, the Director of Communication and Liaison of FIRS made the statement in a series of tweets.’’

‘’We hereby state categorically that the statement is false and was made to misinform and mislead members of the public.’’

‘’The account the Director of Communication FIRS made reference to as illegal was opened by the Central Bank of Nigeria under the Treasury Single Account (TSA) in consultation with the office of Accountant General of the Federation, in the name of NIPOST Stamp Duties Collection Account when CBN gave instruction to Deposit Money Banks (DMB) to commence the deduction of #50 stamp duties from bank customers accounts.’’

‘’The account belongs to the Federation and NIPOST does not have access to whatsoever monies lodged into the account, as such the question of illegality and misappropriation does not arise.’’

NIPOST had earlier argued that under the extant laws of Nigeria, the NIPOST Act 2004 provides and vests solely in NIPOST the power to print adhesives postage stamps, which is the instrument for denoting documents and other transaction instruments in compliance with the provisions of the Stamp Duties Act.

It disclosed that it is seeking the proper implementation of the Finance Act. and was therefore surprised when FIRS took to the tweeter to call out the Chairman, NIPOST Board, Barrister Maimuna Yaya Abubakar, who just brought the attention of the Service and public that the agency would be emasculated if the Act is not properly implemented.