Southern Governors back Rivers, Lagos on VAT collection, insist on Anti-open grazing law


The Southern Nigeria Governors’ Forum yesterday met at the Government House, Enugu to review the state of the nation and the progress of implementation of the decisions reached in her previous meetings.

Reading a communique issued at the end of the meeting, the Chairman of the Forum and Governor of Ondo State, Arakunrin Oluwarotimí Akeredólu, SAN noted that the Forum expressed satisfaction with the rate at which the states in the Southern Nigeria were enacting or amending the Anti- Open Grazing Laws which he said aligned with the uniform template and aspiration of Southern Governors and encouraged the states that were yet to enact this law to do so expeditiously.

Akeredolu stated that the Forum encouraged the full operationalization of already agreed regional security outfits which would meet, share intelligence and collaborate to ensure the security and safety of the region.

He observed that the Forum reaffirmed its earlier commitment to structural and fiscal federalism as resolved at its inaugural meeting held on Tuesday, 11th May, 2021 at Asaba, Delta State and emphasized the need for the Southern States to leverage the legislative competence of their respective State Houses of Assembly as well as representation in the National Assembly to pursue its inclusion in the Nigerian Constitution through the ongoing constitutional amendment.

“Following from paragraph 3 above, the meeting resolved to support the position that the collection of VAT falls within the powers of the States”, he said.

The Governor went on to say that the Forum expressed satisfaction with the handling of issues around the Petroleum Industry ACT (PIA) and ownership of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) by the larger Nigerian Governors’ Forum.

While pointing out that the Forum reiterated their earlier position that the next President of Nigeria must come from the Southern part of Nigeria in line with politics of equity, justice and fairness, he further disclosed that the Forum equally thanked the host Governor, Rt. Hon. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi and chose Rivers State as the next host for the Southern Governors’ Forum meeting in November 2021.

Photo: Governor Rotimi Akeredolu, Chairman, Southern Nigeria Governors’ Forum and Governor of Ondo State.

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