By Dennis Agbo
The United Bank for Africa, UBA, has floored the Anambra State Internal Revenue Service, AiRS, in the bank’s appeal seeking to nullify the N473,315,327 Withholding Tax, WHT, remittance the state government issued to the bank in 2018.
AiRS had issued assessment and demand notice on the UBA asking the bank to remit the above mentioned amount as Withholding Tax remittance liability for 2015, 2016 and 2017 tax years.
The state tax agency equally refused to amend the tax assessment as demanded by the bank, but rather issued the bank a notice of refusal to amend the assessment, insisting that the bank paid the sum as it demanded.
Dissatisfied with both the assessment and refusal to amend notice, UBA in 2019 approached the Tax Appeal Tribunal where it among other reliefs, asked the tribunal to invalidate the assessment for arbitrariness and lack of legal support.
The bank also prayed the tribunal to set aside the demand and amendment refusal notices, arguing that it was not liable to deduct and remit to the amounts the tax set out therein.
Delivering judgment on the appeal in Enugu, the Tax Tribunal panel headed by Mr Chukwuemeka Eze granted two out of the four prayers sought by the bank and struck out the other two reliefs which the tribunal said were not necessary.
The reliefs struck out by the Tribunal included a prayer asking that the AiRS did not have the power to impose penalty and interest on the WHT remittance until the amounts became final and conclusive; and an order directing the AiRS to review its demand notice and amendment refusal notice.