Find below the Notice to Members, issued by Ahmed M. KUMSHE, FCA; the Registrar/ Chief Executive of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN) on July 06, 2020 in an update on Suit No: LD/3288GCM/19-CITN VS ICAN
You would recall that sequel to the disagreement over the interpretation of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) and Terms of Settlement (ToS) executed in 2015 between our institute (ICAN) and the Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (CITN). CITN approached the High Court of Lagos State, praying the court for the following reliefs:
AND FOR a determination of the question below:
v Whether the Memorandum of Understanding and the Terms of Settlement both dated February 12, 2015 between the CITN and ICAN are valid, subsisting and binding on CITN and ICAN.
In the suit instituted by CITN against the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN). CITN sought to enforce the Memorandum of Understanding and Terms of Settlement, to the extent that Chartered Accountants must apply and obtain the CITN practicing License before they can file Tax Returns for their clients with the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS).
We are happy to inform you that on Tuesday, July 2, 2020, the Court in its considered Ruling, delivered virtually via zoom, upheld the Preliminary objection of our Institute and struck out the case against CITN, in favour of ICAN.
Hon. Justice S.A Onigbanjo of the High Court of Lagos State declared CITN's suit an abuse of court process and an embarrassment to the Judiciary.
Clearly, the Implication of the above ruling is that the reliefs sought by CITN which necessitated the suit in the first instance, failed.
As things stand now, CITN is unable to enforce the memorandum and Terms of settlement to the extent of compelling ICAN Members to obtain CITN's licence before filing Tax returns with FIRS. The status quo remains, implying that ICAN Members do not require CITN's licence before filing Tax returns with FIRS. CITN's suit remains struck out and the reliefs sought by CITN are not entertainable.
The earlier ruling at the Federal High Court in Suit NO. FHC/L/CS//125/2019 did not make pronouncement on the memorandum and terms of settlement between ICAN and CITN. Regulation 5 of FIRS Act is not reflected in the Judgement of the Federal High Court. The Federal High Court judgement does not affect the status quo.
We will keep you informed of further developments as they unfold.
Please, do continue to stay safe, and rest assured that the Institute will continue to defend the ICAN Act and its mandate.
Related to the Suit - ICAN v CITN