Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has identified impunity as one of the major factors responsible for the security challenges in the country.
“Part of the crisis in this country today is because of impunity”, said the governor, during an interactive session between the State government and corporate organisations in Port Harcourt, yesterday.
He said, “We are talking about insecurity in this country today; what are those factors that have led to insecurity? One of such factors, as far as I am concerned, is impunity. Everybody wants to do whatever he wants to do regardless of the law. They don’t care”.
The Rivers State government organised the event ahead of the September deadline for the implementation of the State’s Value-Added Tax (VAT) law.
Commenting on the judgment of the Federal High Court, in Port Harcourt, which paved the way for States to collect VAT instead of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) that had collected it over the years, Wike accused the Federal Government agency of usurping the responsibilities of States by collecting the tax.
He also took a swipe at people in leadership positions that have refused to condemn and resist illegal practices over fear or bias.
“We run a constitutional democracy; we don’t run a military government. Yes, our democracy may not be perfect, there are certain key elements – whether we like it or not – that for us to say we run a constitutional democracy, we must have to fulfill. One of those things is to obey and respect the rule of law”, Governor Wike emphasised.
“It is only in this country that I have seen that an agency of the government can challenge the authority of a component unit of the federation. This country is a federal system, made up of various component units of the Federal Government – the States and the local governments.
“It is important that an agency of the government cannot dictate to a State government. If they will ever dictate, not to a State like Rivers, because we will not allow it”.