By John Kayode
Relying on the judgement delivered in the Chief Magistrate court,of Ondo State, by his Worship O.A Edwin, the Chief Magistrate Grade 1, the State Internal Revenue Services (ODIRS) sealed six business centers in Ondo East and West including Ile-Oluji/ Oke Igbo local governments over tax default.
The affected business center include; C Alapa Sawmill in Bolorunduro, BAFDAM Rockview hotel, Samakinwa road, Gilbert Sawmill, Ile oluji road,igbo Oja, Ondo state, Be Happy extension warehouse in Ile Oluji. While Helibright hotel and 1828 hotel & Suites were also sealed in Ondo West.
In a chat with newsmen, the Senior Revenue Manager, Ondo State Internal Revenue Service, Mr Gregory Afuwape said, the defaulters refused to pay their taxes between 2017 and 2016 till date, despite series of notices served on them.
Afuwape added that the enforcement became neccesary due to experience they had with property owners, saying each time they approach them with notice to pay their liabilities they always hide for us.
He said: “Some of the property owners always run away to avoid payment of tax ,and that was why we are here to recover the land use charge from the owners of the business centers.
He adds: Ondo State Government will not give room to tax defaulters in the state, this is where the government get money to construct roads and other infrastructurer development. All the property owners have been assessed, given statutory notices which empower us to embark on this enforcement.
“We have been to court before now, we secured judgement against the owners of all these properties ,but they failed to come and do the needful that is why we went back to court to get court order to seal their businesses.”
Afuwaperevealedthatto unsealed the properties ,their owners should go to our headquarters in Akure and pay to the designated Ondo State account, saying once they do that,their business centers will be opened.
He warned against any attempt to break the seal or the padlock on any of the properties, saying breaking the seals is a contempt of court, which is liable to 7 years imprisonment.
“We adviseanyonethat occupy government land to approach ODIRS office close to them and pay for their land use charge to avoid this kind of embarrassment”, he said.