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FIRS Seals 19 Firms Over Unpaid Taxes

The Federal Inland Revenue Service has sealed 19 companies over alleged failure to fulfil their fiscal obligations as required by law.

In some of the enforcement operations carried out by officials of the revenue authorities in some major cities across the country, the affected defaulting companies’ operations were disrupted and ultimately stopped as their managements could not show any convincing evidence that the taxes were paid.

For instance, yesterday in Lagos the FIRS enforcement team sealed the premises of Seabulk Offshore Operations Nigeria Limited at 11A, Grace Anjos Drive, Lekki over an alleged unpaid tax totaling N34.546 million. The team also sealed De Rembrandt Hotel (formerly Renaissance Hotel), Ikeja, over alleged unpaid taxes totalling N30.60 million.

A statement by the FIRS on the enforcement exercise indicated that the Lagos team, under the leadership  of Mallam Bukar Umar, had the previous day  sealed the premises of Associated Port and Marine Development Company at 7B, Oranyan Street, Apapa, over alleged unpaid taxes of N12.5 million.

Other companies affected by the agency’s tax payment drive were Jinhua Group Limited in Ibeju Lekki, which allegedly defaulted in tax payment to the tune of N3.1 billion; Kunoch Limited in Ikoyi, sealed over a tax liability of N34.3 million; Citeco Global in Ikeja, allegedly owing  N99 million in unpaid taxes and Anisha Enterprises in Apapa, whose tax liability was computed to be N24 million.

On Monday, the FIRS team led by Mrs. Anita Erinne, had in Port Harcourt, Rivers State sealed the offices of Benek Engineering Company Limited over alleged unremitted Value Added Tax of over  N137.96 million dating back to 2014 as well as the Arena Event Centre, over an outstanding tax of about N25.06 million

Other companies sanctioned for their tax defaults in the city include, DSV Pipetronix Limited at Rumuibekwe Housing Estate over alleged N99.81 million; Red Transport and Logistics, for failure to remit VAT totalling N1,918,764,246; and Otopus Clan Nigeria Limited, which was shut over a debt of N198,775,513.55.

According the tax agency, a similar exercise carried out in Warri, Delta State, led to the sealing of Golden Tulip Hotel, Sam-Pira International Limited and Bridge View Hotel Ashinmo Resources, Hotel De Great, West African Pumping Services Limited, amongst other tax defaulting entities.

Commenting on the action of the agency and options open to the managements of the various entities to get their companies back to operations, Erinne advised the affected the management of the companies to pay their outstanding taxes.

She quipped: “We are not punishing you. Once you comply with payments, we will come and unseal.”

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