Multichoice, FIRS agree out-of-court settlement

The Federal Inland Revenue Service and MultiChoice Nigeria have agreed to an out-of-court settlement of their pending tax disputes.

According to a statement, both parties have agreed to an amicable resolution of their issues which had led to a series of lawsuits.

The statement read in part, “By the broad terms of the agreement, MultiChoice shall withdraw all pending lawsuits towards an amicable resolution of the dispute.

“Also, as part of the agreement, the FIRS commenced a forensic systems audit of MultiChoice accounts on Tuesday, 8 March, 2022 to determine the tax liability of the Company.”

Recall that in April 2021, the FIRS issued Notices of Assessment and Demand Notices in the sum of N1.8tn on MultiChoice.

MultiChoice, which disputed the assessments, approached the Tax Appeal Tribunal leading to a series of cases at both the TAT and the Federal High Court.

In August, the FIRS announced that a TAT court sitting in Lagos has ordered Multichoice to pay 50 per cent of the N1.8tn it had determined to be the amount the company hasn’t made in tax payments.

MultiChoice countered the ruling saying the TAT court did not compel it to pay the 50 per cent the FIRS claimed.

Later the company would reject the ruling of the TAT court which dismissed its appeal against the $342m Value Added Tax amount imposed on it by the FIRS.

However, MultiChoice and FIRS have said with the agreement and the resumption of the Forensic Systems Audit, it is expected that the dispute will be resolved soon.

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