Benue revenue service seals off federal agriculture varsity over N2.3b debt


Benue State Internal Revenue Service (BIRS) has sealed off the Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi, over non-remittance of Personal Income Tax running into N2.3 billion.

The Chairman of the board, Mrs. Mimi Adzape-Orubibi, who led the enforcement agent to the university, sealed off the offices of the vice chancellor, registrar and the bursar.

She said the BIRS had to make the move after the university failed to respond to several letters written to it to pay up the outstanding Personal Income Tax from 2007 to 2011.

But the institution’s chapter of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has described the move as a fraudulent attempt to commence another round of illegal deductions from the salaries of its members. It said the situation might instigate crisis in the university.
The acting Chairman of ASUU, Mr. Bemgba Anjembe, insisted that PAYE was deducted monthly from members of staff salaries and alleged that there was suspected connivance between BIRS and the university authorities not to remit taxes already deducted from members of staff, thus denying them access to tax clearance certificates.

Meanwhile, the students of the university have besieged the BIRS office located on Gboko Road, Makurdi, to protest the closure of their institution and called for dialogue between the BIRS and the university authorities.

The university’s management, through its Public Relations Officer (PRO), Joseph Fanafa, said it was maintaining a dignified silence on the matter until the outcome of a meeting with BIRS scheduled for tomorrow.