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Senate confirms probes over alleged CBN non-remittance of N20 trillion stamp duty



Stamp Duty
The Senate has commences investigations over alleged failure by the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, to remit stamp duty of about N20 trillion into the Federation Account.
Ahmed Ibrahim Lawan.

President of the Senate (Nigeria), Senator Ahmed Ibrahim Lawan.

Chairman, Senate Committee on Banking, Insurance and Other Financial Institutions, Senator Uba Sani, who disclosed this, however, warned  against inflammatory and potentially damaging comments on the issue.

Sani said the committee had received petitions on the allegation against the CBN, however explaining that, in the past six months, the Red Chamber had been investigating the matter.

The senator who, pleaded with members of the public, especially critical stakeholders, not to be in a hurry in coming to a conclusion that the CBN has actually erred, stated that since he and other members of the Committee were inaugurated, the issue of  non- remittance of stamp duty by the CBN had been on the front burner and that it had been receiving requisite attention at the Committee level.

He disclosed that the Senate Committee had obtained records of other agencies of the Federal Government investigating or familiar with the matter, saying, “It is much more complicated than what most Nigerians know. However, what I can say for now is that from what we have been able to sieve out from documents available to us as well as the depositions we have taken, it is clear that so many forces are confusing Nigerians on this issue.

Godwin Emefiele

CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele

“With the evidence contained in the plethora of documents the CBN has supplied to my Committee, it can easily be deduced that the total stamp duty unremitted cannot be over N20 trillion as being alleged.

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“For one, from records available to us, the total deposit in the Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) in Nigeria as of 2016 was only about N18 trillion; so how then can Stamp Duties alone be N21 trillion as being claimed by some petitioners?”, according to the report by Vanguard.

Stamp Duty: NIPOST vs FIRS

Just recently, the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) made moves to take over the stamp Duty collection.

This drew protests from the Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy.

The Minister Dr. Isa Ali-Pantami, decried the move by the FIRS to start collecting stamp duty.

The Minister regretted the FIRS’ moves, saying that the Service is encroaching on the responsibility of the Nigerian Postal Service, NIPOST.

He wondered why the FIRS bypassed the Ministry and NIPOST to involve other stakeholders for the Stamp Duty collection process.


In his words: ‘‘They only invited few stakeholders that will support their interest who endorsed it saying that FIRS should collect Stamp Duty but we objected to it.


Dr. Pantami speaking during a press conference in Abuja

“I wrote a letter to the Minister of Finance saying that this cannot be tolerated; I also wrote the Senate President on the issue, we insisted on our stand….

Stamp Duty Bill

The National Assembly in a move holistically amend the 2004 Stamp Duties Act, which has become obsolete, passed the Stamp Duties (Amendment) Bill 2018 (March 2018).

The bill is meant to ensure compliance with current realities and for related matters of the present day Nigeria.

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The green chamber of the National Assembly (House of Representatives) had earlier passed the Amendment. recalls that the Stamp Duties Amendment Bill (“the Bill”) was introduced at the House of Reps earlier in the year, seeking to expand the scope of the extant Stamp Duties Act CAP. S8 L.F.N. 2004 (“SDA”) by making receipts issued in respect of deposits made into a bank liable to the imposition of stamp duties. It also seeks to increase the respective fines that will be meted out to persons that contravene provisions of the SDA.


Revenue House, Abuja

Also recall, on 15 January 2016, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) relied upon the decision of the Federal High Court in Standard Chartered Bank Nigeria Limited v. Kasmal International Services Limited and 22 Ors and proceeded to issue a circular titled ‘Collection and Remittance of Statutory Charges on receipts of Nigeria Postal Service under the Stamp Duties Act’.

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