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LAGOS REJECTS PROPOSED REDUCTION OF CONSTITUENCIES

By NBF NEWS
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Lagos State has rejected the proposed reduction of constituencies in the state, saying the state needed more constituencies.

At a meeting attended by legislators at the state and federal levels, as well as members of the state executive, participants at the parley said that the disputed 2006 census should not be used to delineate constituencies.

The fourth executive/legislative meeting, organised by the state's Political and Legislative Powers Bureau, was presided over by the state Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola.

In a communiqué read by a member of the House of Representatives, Mr. Moruf Akinderu-Fatai, the participants said, 'It will be unjustifiable to use the disputed census of Lagos which is still in litigation at the census tribunal to re-delineate Federal Constituencies especially in Lagos, which is the economic nerve centre of the nation, as this will amount to an internal conspiracy against Nigeria's economic interest.'

They also rejected the proposed increase in the Value Added Tax by the Federal Government in view of the pending suit before the Supreme Court.

According to them, any increase would not only increase the current burden on the citizenry, but would be inimical to the economic growth of the nation.

The communiqué further read, 'The residual powers of State House of Assembly to legislate over tax matters not included in the Exclusive list remain inviolate. In essence, the Federal Inland Revenue Service Act should be amended to exclude those aspects of Personal Income Tax, Stamp Duties and Capital Gains Taxes in respect of which State Boards of Internal Revenue have been statutorily designated as appropriate tax authorities.'

Earlier in his keynote address, Fashola pledged the continued determination of his administration in ensuring economic growth through infrastructural renewal and development.

The chairman of the event and former governor of the state, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, who was represented by the Chairman of the state chapter of Action Congress, Chief Henry Ajomale, said that it was necessary to have interactive parley between the legislative and executive at all times as it would help in consolidating the gains of Lagos.

The Speaker of the state House of Assembly, Mr. Adeyemi Ikuforiji, described the event as a desirable forum especially with the presence of chairmen of the various councils in the state.

He advised that the parley should hold at regular intervals, possibly every quarter, emphasising that with such meetings could address friction between both arms.