When people think that Umahi would use his region or other things as major factors to base his decisions, he proves them wrong. One would think that Umahi would have massively supported the policy that Governor Nyesom Wike is heavily backing, but Umahi thinks otherwise. He chose to oppose Wike on the issue.
Image credit: Peoples Gazette
According to a report by Peoples Gazette, the Ebonyi State Governor has openly opposed the idea for state to collect Value Added Tax (VAT) as Wike is seriously agitating for. Instead, Umahi insists that he strongly supports the federal government to collect the VAT and share as it has been doing through the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS). This article will discuss the reasons why Umahi opposed Wike on the issue.
Image credit: Premium Times
First, Ebonyi generates low amount of money. This is one of the main reasons Umahi is not backing Wike on the VAT issue. Since Ebonyi generates small amount of money unlike Wike's Rivers State and Lagos State ruled by Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, Umahi will not support state collection because it will not favour him. Obviously, Umahi's state will get more money if FIRS collects the VAT and shares it to states than if states are allowed to collect from their territories as Wike and Sanwo-Olu are agitating for.
Image credit: The Sun
Second, Umahi is opposing the move for political reasons. Umahi just defected from the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, to the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC which is the party President Muhammadu Buhari belongs to. After his official defection, Umahi has been speaking and doing things that support the Buhari-led federal government. He is doing these to impress the President and the APC hierarchy that he is very loyal to his new party. This VAT issues is one of those key issues that Umahi feels he should use to show his loyalty and support for the Buhari-led federal government. As a politicians, anything that will help to promote one's political interest including impressing the master is allowed. Umahi is playing his card ahead of 2023 politics.
Image credit: Channels
Finally, Umahi is opposing the move because he knows it will favour Wike who is the ringleader for states collection of VAT. It would be recalled that Umahi and Wike have been having war of words which show that they are not totally in good terms. This manifested first when Wike blasted the Ebonyi Governor after he dumped PDP and joined APC. It also manifested when Wike knocked Umahi for praying that God should give Nigeria a President like Buhari.
Even in the report cited above, Umahi also blasted Wike suggesting that he boasts and talks on peoples money. For Umahi, opposing the State collection that the Rivers Governor is fighting for is a swift way of hitting back at Wike s more like his political rival. What do you expect? After all, all of them are politicians who want to get what they want. So, Umahi simply chose the side that favours him.
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