The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) has reportedly concluded plans to seize plots of land and buildings worth N4.8 billion from 30 companies operating in Nigeria.
Reports that the ICPC took the decision to take over the properties located in different parts of the Federal Capital Territory because of complaint by the Federal Inland Revenue Service that the firms had defaulted in the payment of prescribed taxes to the government despite several reminders.
The report said the properties to be seized include 22.9 hectares of undeveloped land, one plaza, and a block of six two-bedroom flats located in Wuse, Zone One, Abuja belonging to the Shehu Musa Yar’adua Foundation.
Other properties to be taken over belong to firms and business organizations. It was learnt that during investigation, the alleged owners of the properties disclaimed them. The spokesperson of the ICPC, Rasheedat A Okoduwa, said in a statement that the decision to seize the properties spread around Abuja, was because of a petition to ICPC by the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS).
The petition, the statement said, accused the companies of defaulting in tax payment to the tune of N288.2 million.
The statement quoted section 37 of the corrupt practices and other related offences act 2000 as empowering ICPC to seize assets alleged to be subject of an offence under the law.
It also quoted section 48 as authorising it to apply to a high court for an order of forfeiture within 12 months of the date of seizure.