Former Chairman of Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS, Mr. Babatunde Fowler is currently being interrogated by the Economic and Financial Crime Commission, EFCC.
According to News Agency of Nigeria, the interrogation stems from a petition to the EFCC by former staff of the tax firm, Alpha Beta, Mr. Dapo Apara.
Who is Dapo Apara?
Apara is Nigerian chartered accountant and former Managing Director/Managing Partner and Chief Executive Officer of Alpha Beta. In 2018, he claimed he was wrongly sacked because he attempted to put an end to the fraudulent activities going on in Alpha Beta.
After the termination of his appointment, however, Apara came out to expose the fraud within the firm with strong evidences and serious allegations.
Alpha Beta Consulting Limited’s the revenue mobilization and collection advisors to the Lagos State Government. The consulting firm handles the computation, tracking, and reconciliation of Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) in Lagos State in return for a commission, International Center For Investigative Reporting (ICIR) states.
This Alpha Beta is believed to be owned by the National leader of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu. Mr Apara, who claims to own 30 per cent stake in the company, alleged that Mr Tinubu “has directed and dictated the affairs” of the company by diverting assets to himself at the detriment of the claimant (Mr Apara).
A petition written by Apara in 2018 said Alpha Beta had become an avenue for official corruption of government officials, a conduit pipe for massive money-laundering scheme, tax evasion, among other vices. The firm as, however, come out to refute Apara’s claim.
Who is Babatunde Fowler and why is he involved in all of these?
Dr. Babatunde Fowler is a tax administrator and social reformer. He is being questioned at EFCC’s headquarters in Abuja over the N100 billion tax evasion allegations by Apara against Alpha Beta Consulting Limited.
Fowler is involved in the scandal because he served as the Chief Executive Officer/Executive Chairman of the Lagos State Board of Internal Revenue from 2005 to 2014. Fowler was replaced as FIRS Chairman by President Muhammadu Buhari in December 2019 at the end of his first term in office.