College of Education, Ikere-Ekiti Closed Over Tax Issues

The Federal Inland Revenue Service on Wednesday sealed the College of Education, Ikere-Ekiti, and arrested its principal officers for not remitting about N6.7 million tax arrears.
The arrested Principal Officers were the Provost, Prof. Francesca Aladejana; Registrar, Mr. Gbenga Ojo, and the Bursar, Mr. Kayode Ige.

The enforcement team, led by Mr. Olugbenga Adepesoye, stormed the institution and sealed it around 10:30 am in a joint operation with the Ekiti State Police Command.

Speaking with journalists after the operation, the Ekiti State Monitor, Mr. Olugbenga Adegoke, said, “We came here because of the arrears of value added tax and withholding tax that the institution is owing us.

“The assessment period is between 2002 and 2007. The reconciliation was done around May 2008. It was about N12 million. Since then, the institution only paid over N5 million. The outstanding is N6.7 million.

“We made a lot of entreaties and persuasions, we monitored them, on several occasions we saw the provost, the bursar and the registrar. All our entreaties fell on deaf ears. That is why we are here.”

Adegoke said the service had no immediate plans to prosecute the officials.

“Until when they make the commitment and the commitment is not fulfilled, we may be tempted to refer it to the legal and prosecution unit of the FIRS. They may likely face prosecution if they fail to pay the outstanding,” he said.

The atmosphere became charged on arrival of the Provost who was not around when the enforcement team got to the institution.
She engaged in a hot argument with Adegoke, who insisted that she must go with the enforcement team to Ado-Ekiti.

Aladejana said the institution was making efforts to pay the arrears, while begging for understanding.

But Adegoke replied, “That has been said several times. The FIRS wants a commitment, that is why we are here. We are not here to intimidate anybody, we want a full commitment on when you will pay the outstanding N6.7 million.

“We know this is a state institution but what we need is that the provost, the bursar and the Registrar need to go with us to make commitment.”

The three officials accompanied by their lawyer were later released around 1pm after extracting commitments from them at the FIRS State Office. Adegoke confirmed their release to PUNCH’s correspondent.

– Source: Punch

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