The right of collection of tenement rate within the Abuja Municipal Area Council (AMAC), is currently taking a new twist, as the House of Representatives Committee on the FCT, has ordered the administration of the AMAC to steer clear of such move, stressing that such would jeopardize the process of revenue collection in the FCT.
The Chairman of AMAC, Alhaji Abdulahi Adamu Candido, in a swift reaction, while addressing the media, said that any attempt to stop its administration from collecting tenement rate within its territory is ultra-vies.
According to him, the recent attack by the National Assembly asking its administration to discontinue from carrying out its legitimate responsibility, amount to disobeying the law.
In his words: ”the matter is such that is encroaching on the constitution responsibility of the area councils in the FCT as enshrined in the 1999 constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria, 2011 as amended.
He said that the power of AMAC to collect, demand and enforce compliance in respect to the payment, of tenement rate within the area under the coverage of the council, is in accordance with section 7 and the forth schedule of the constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria 1999 as amended.
Further in defense of its rights of collection of the rate, the Chairman, stressed that local government Act, law of FCT 2006 and the taxes and levies under the approved list for collection, Act 2004, as well as the Abuja Municipal area council tenement rate collection Bye-laws 2012, also lay credence to the council’s claim.
He said that “the council perfectly understands its constitutional, statutory and legal powers by the virtue of the constitution of Nigeria, various acts of the National assembly, including the local government laws adopted by the National assembly vide section 13 of the federal Capital territory Act, Cap 12B LFN 2009 and court of Appeal decision will not involve itself in any activity that is not backed up by law.”
AMAC however, said that should there have been any MoU entered with by the present or previous administration, with the FCT internally generated revenue, to be in charge of revenue collection, that such agreement may have been done in outright attempt to intimidate the area councils.
He said that the its operation is legally backed by law for the avoidance of doubt, stating that there have been a plethora of judicial pronouncement giving interpretation on the legality of the collection of tenement rate by the area councils.
Meanwhile, Daily Times has been fed with the information, that members of the National assembly committee on the FCT, has in the recent times had a running battle with the authorities who invade their residents foe the payment of the tenement rate.
Some of the property owners according to our sources have found it disturbing being approached by two different bodies being the FCT administration and AMAC administration asking for the same tenement rate collection.