By Henry Umoru
ABUJA- THE Senate Committee on Finance has summoned the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Shamsuna Ahmed to appear before it to give detailed information on the reasons for the proposed increase of Value Added Tax, VAT by the Federal Government from the present 5% to 7.2%.
Also summoned by the Senator Solomon Adeola, All Progressives Congress, APC, Lagos West led Senate Committee on Finance to throw more light on the rationale for the proposed increase in VAT is the Executive Chairman of Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS, Babatunde Fowler.
In a statement yesterday by his Media Adviser, the chairman of the Senate Committee on Finance stated that the interaction with the two key officials of the Federal Government will form part of the basis for possible amendments of the VAT Act and to assuage any sentiments against the proposed VAT increase if eventually the Act is amended.
Reacting to the increase as announced by the Minister of Finance Hajia Zainab Ahmed after a Federal Executive Council Meeting, Senator Solomon Adeola said that the proposed increase in VAT has generated mixed reactions among the general populace on its possible effects on living standard and the economy.
Senator Adeola said, “We are glad that the Minister of Finance indicated that the VAT Act will have to be amended for the increase to take effect. But we are concerned about the current economic situation of the country as it affects the generality of the people.”