An Abuja-based pro-democracy group, Coalition of Civil Society and Media Executives for Policy Stability (COCMEP), has lambasted Mr. Uche Ogah, a contestant in the Abia State governorship seat over his litigation in the Supreme Court over the alleged tax default against the state Governor, Okezie Ikpeazu, describing it as “frivolous, desperation, ridiculous, waste of time, busy body, unnecessary distraction and overheating of the polity in the state.”
A statement signed by COCMEP’s President Innocent Okadigbo, and its Publicity Secretary, Tijjani Abdullahi, which was made available to THISDAY yesterday, described as sagacious and a reflection of the truth and true position of the matter; the judgment of the Court of Appeal which set aside and upturned the earlier Justice Abang Okon High Court “controversial, biased and unfortunate judgment on the matter.”
COCMEP which in the statement cleared Ikpeazu of any tax offence, argued that there was no way the governor could have evaded tax and forged tax document because as a civil servant and for all civil servants, their taxes are deducted at source before remittance or payment of the monthly salary.
He added that the dating and issuance of tax receipts is immaterial because “the Revenue Office does not issue civil servants with tax receipts unless on demand or request and the system is such that tax receipts of civil servants for 10 years or more can be issued in a day.”
The statement emphasised that what is material is that Ikpeazu was a civil servant; he was paid salaries and his taxes were deducted at source before payment of his salaries.
“Based on this fact, Ogah is most likely to lose again at the Supreme Court.”
According to it, “Ogah’s litigation is characterised by absurdities, legal emptiness and bankruptcy but it is sustained by fraudulent and greedy elements surrounding him which makes him a time waster at the Supreme Court.”
COCMEP therefore advised him to rid himself of political greed and desperation and wait for God’s time to pursue his governorship ambition, “but certainly not in Ikpeazu’s dispensation.”