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By NBF News
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The North Central Zone of the Tax Appeal Tribunal, on Tuesday, began its inaugural sitting in Jos.

The tribunal is expected to settle disputes between tax payers and tax authorities.

The Chairman of the zone, Mr. Abraham Yisa, on the occasion, explained 'Our mission is to resolve tax disputes on a basis that is fair and impartial, flexible and speedy, convenient and affordable, with a view to promoting public confidence and voluntary compliance with tax laws.'

He pledged that the Tribunal would be 'fair and transparent, but very firm'' in its decisions.

According to him, the tribunal was established by section 59 of the Federal Inland Revenue Service Act 2007, to settle aggrieved parties in the tax business.

'The tribunal replaced the defunct Body of Appeal Commissioners and Value Added Tax Tribunals,''Yisa said.

He added that the tribunal would settle cases arising from Companies Income Tax Act, CAP.60 LFN 1990, Personal Income Tax Act No.104, 1993 and Petroleum Profit Tax Act CAP.354 LFN 1990.

Others included the Value Added Tax Act No.102, 1993 and Capital Gains Tax Act CAP.42 LFN 1990.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the North Central Zone of the tribunal, located in Jos, has jurisdiction over Plateau, Niger, Benue, Nasarawa and Kogi states.

'But for the purpose of clearing the backlog of cases inherited by the tribunal nationwide, we will handle cases outside our zone, irrespective of the location of the parties,' he said.

The tribunal is made up of Yisa, the Chairman and other commissioners, including Mrs. Hashiya Umar, Mrs. Olusola Ibidapo-Obe, Mr. Joseph Ihekwereme and Mr. Jibril Useni.

Mr. Edward Pwajok, Plateau Attorney-General and Commissioner Justice, in a goodwill message, thanked the Federal Government for situating the tribunal in Jos.

Pwajok urged citizens to be more responsible by paying their taxes as when due, adding that they should not hesitate to go to the tribunal whenever there was any dispute.

The representative of Federal Inland Revenue Service, Mrs. Mary Okpe, in her remarks, gave an assurance that tax disputes would be settled speedily in the zone with the constitution of the tribunal in Jos.