A federal high court sitting in Abuja has vacated a ruling that barred the Nigeria Investment Promotion Council (NIPC) from spending its internally generated revenue.
In a December 2019 ruling, A. I Chikere, a judge of the federal high court, had ordered the NIPC management to halt spending its IGR for any purpose.
The IGR accrued by the agency between 2018 and 2019 was reported to be N5.6 billion.
Ali Sani, a member of NIPC council, had filed a suit contesting remunerations to NIPC board members.
Sani had asked the court to declare spending of the funds as illegal arguing that the spending did not go through the federal government’s budget process.
He also urged the court to compel the NIPC to remit all revenues to the federal government’s consolidated revenue account.
Sani had also asked the court to stop Yewande Sadiku, NIPC executive secretary, from taking decisions on pioneer status applications without input from the governing council.
The federal government’s pioneer status initiative is an incentive that grants companies from qualifying industries exemptions from paying company income tax for a period of three years.
Benefitting industries can also apply for the tax holiday to be extended for another two-year period.
Funds generated from administering the process and a 1% cut on profits generated by benefitting companies are classified as internally generated revenue for the NIPC.
In its ruling on Wednesday, the federal high court in Abuja said the suit was statute-barred and as such the court lacks jurisdiction to entertain the suit.
It also vacated the exparte order barring the board from spending the IGR on grounds that it could not grant an injunction on a completed act.