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Tax Office Seals Unity Bank, Others over N1.4b Debt

By Dipo Olowookere

The premises of some banks in Makurdi, Benue State capital, were sealed on Thursday by officials of the Benue Internal Revenue Service (BIRS).

The affected financial firms were shut down by the revenue agency over alleged tax default to the tune of N1.43 billion.

The enforcement team, led by the Executive Chairman of BIRS, Mrs Mimi Adzape-Orubibi, sealed the branches of Fidelity Bank, Skye Bank, Unity Bank and Zenith Bank in Makurdi.

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She said the companies failed to pay their assessed PAYE taxes/liabilities after being notified about this.

Mrs Adzape-Orubibi claimed Skye Bank Plc in Makurdi owed about N1 billion from 2009 to 2014 tax years, while Unity Bank owes N105.4 million from 2011 to 2015.

Also, according to her, Fidelity Bank is indebted to the tune of N113.9 million from 2009 to 2014, while the debt of Zenith Bank stood at N213.9 million.

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The tax boss, while addressing newsmen after the exercise, said Fidelity Bank, Skye Bank and Unity Bank were given Best of Judgement Assessment because they refused to cooperate with BIRS for a successful audit investigation.

She said on the other hand, Zenith Bank submitted all the documents requested by the board but refused to pay after the audit exercise within the seven days provided by law.

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Dipo Olowookere is a journalist based in Nigeria that has passion for reporting business news stories. At his leisure time, he watches football and supports 3SC of Ibadan.

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