NIGERIA: Agbaje Dismisses Fashola’s Allegation on Tax Evasion

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The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship candidate in Lagos State, Mr. Jimi Agbaje, has described the allegation by the Lagos State Government that his company was owing the state tax as “false” and “desperate.”

Agbaje, in a statement made available to THISDAY and signed by his media aide, Felix Oboagwina, stated that he was surprised “at this rather personal and unprovoked attack against his person by Governor Babatunde Fashola.”

According to the statement, the same state government this month sent a personal letter to Agbaje, through the states Commissioner for Finance, commending him for his faithfulness in paying taxes relating to his residence.

“We have a letter signed by Ayo Gbeleyi, the State Commissioner for
Finance where Agbaje received commendations for fulfilling his tax obligations. The letter from the ministry says: “A review of our payment records from 2011 shows that you have been consistent with the payment of Land Use Charge on the above property (Agbaje’s residence in Apapa).

“The Lagos State Government wishes to express its appreciation to you on your consistent fulfillment of your civil responsibility and your singular contribution towards the development of the state. We look forward to your continued cooperation in this regard.

“It is a curious contradiction that several days later, the governor himself would express sentiments clearly in contradiction to the spirit and letter of that voluntary and unsolicited commendation from the state.

“Are they feeling the heat of Agbaje and PDP’s impending victory in the state, or how does one explain this recourse to personal attacks recently embarked upon by chieftains of APC?
“Although he founded JayKay Pharmaceuticals, Agbaje left the directorship of the company in 2006, and this is on record with the state. He is no longer involved in the running of the company. And today, he is not even an Executive Director.”

According to Oboagwina, “It will be recalled that the governor only about two weeks ago, said that Agbaje was too old to be governor, although the PDP candidate , only 57.

“This fresh outburst amounts to another futile attempt at mudslinging
by a desperado group that is up against a formidable opponent, and it has only succeeded in staining the source. Lagosians should be wary of APC and its bag of tricks,” the statement read.

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