The Oyo government has asked the Rivers Division of the Court of Appeal to join the suit instituted by the Rivers government against the federal government.
The suit is in respect of the bid by Rivers to take over the collection of VAT from the federal government.
The joinder request is contained in a statement issued on Tuesday by Taiwo Adisa, the Chief Press Secretary to Governor Seyi Makinde.
According to the statement, the suit instituted by the Attorney General of Oyo, Oyelowo Oyewo, is seeking an order of the appellate court to enable Oyo to join the suit as an interested party.
“In the suit, the government of Oyo state is seeking two orders, viz: an order of the honourable court joining the attorney general of Oyo state as a respondent on the appeal with suit number FHC/PH/CS/149/2020 and appeal number CA/PH/282/2021 and any other order the court may deem fit,” said the statement.”
According to the statement, the Oyo government was unaware of the suit between the Rivers government and the FIRS at the federal high court until the judgment was delivered.
“Other grounds upon which the application was based include that the decision of the appellate court will affect the collection of VAT by the government of Oyo state, being one of the states which the judgment of the lower court recognised as entitled to collect VAT within its territorial jurisdiction,” the statement further explained.
It mentioned that Oyo would be impacted “one way or another” by any judgment delivered by the court in the appeal.”
According to the statement, the grounds claimed by the Oyo government include that the applicant is a necessary party to the suit as it will be bound by the judgment of the court in the appeal.
“The interests of the applicant and that of the respondent, in this case, are similar being states within the Federal Republic of Nigeria,” it added.
It further stated that the state, being one of the 36 states of Nigeria, would be affected by the appellate court’s decision.
It added that joining the state to the suit already instituted by Rivers would help avoid multiplicity of lawsuits by the states against the federal government.