…says CBN opened collection account
The raging tussle between the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) and Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST) over Stamp Duty collection continued yesterday with fresh revelation by NIPOST that the payment account was opened by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). NIPOST stated that it does not have access to whatsoever monies lodged into the account.
A statement issued by the General Manager, Corporate Communications, NIPOST, Frank Alao, averred that the claim via tweets by Director, Corporate Communications, FIRS, Abdullahi Ismaila Ahmad, describing the stamp duty account as illegal was incorrect.
He said the attention of the agency was drawn to the publication by FIRS that NIPOST operates 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 made to misinform and mislead members of the public,” he said. NIPOST stated that the account FIRS made reference to as “illegal” was opened by the CBN under the Treasury Single Account (TSA) in consultation with the office of the Accountant General of the Federation, in the name of NIPOST Stamp Duty Collection Account when CBN gave instruction to deposit money banks to commence the deduction of N50 stamp duty 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,” the statement clarified. It explained that under the extant laws of Nigeria, NIPOST Act 2004 provides and vests solely in NIPOST the power to print adhesive postage stamps, which is the instrument for denoting documents and other transaction instruments in compliance with the provisions of the Stamp Duties Act.
“Historically, NIPOST in Nigeria, just like in the comity of nations, has at different times produced adhesive postage stamps and revenue stamps for the Federal Government. It is to this end that NIPOST seeks the proper implementation of the Finance Act.
“NIPOST is, therefore, taken aback when FIRS took to the twitter to call out the Chairman, NIPOST Board, Barrister Maimuna Yaya Abubakar, who only tried to bring the attention of the service and public that NIPOST would be emasculated if the Act is not properly implemented.
“This is more so when there was a meeting between FIRS and NIPOST in July 2013 in the office of the Executive Chairman of FIRS and resolution reached that NIPOST is statutorily duty bound to provide the stamps to be used by FIRS at both federal and state levels,” NIPOST said.