Medical directors sue Abuja area council over ‘illegal charges’

The Guild of Medical Directors, GMD has asked an High Court in Abuja to look into the ‘illegal and unnecessary’ taxes collected from them by officials of Abuja Municipal Area Council, AMAC.

The counsel to the guild, Akinwale Aderele, who made the plea via an application brought before the judge, Charles Angbaza ,on Thursday, said the group was seeking, ”a judicial review of taxes and levies paid to AMAC so as to reduce the burden on owners of private hospitals.”

The Guild is an association that comprises owners of private health facilities.

The chairman of the association, Chito Nwana, who spoke with journalists after the hearing explained that there had been cases where members of the association were asked to pay for, ”radio and television fees, environmental fees, trade and operating licence fees.”

This, she said, ”is killing many hospitals and must be reviewed urgently.”

She said “different agencies of government within the FCT have descended on private hospitals with duplicitous multitude of crippling taxes. The government is making life difficult for healthcare practitioners and will ultimately force many to close.

“This will have a devastating effect on healthcare delivery in the FCT as private hospitals currently treat up to 70 per cent of patients requiring health care,” she said.

Mrs. Nwana noted that if the act continues, medical directors will have no choice than, ”to either close or increase the price of consultancy, which will affect the residents.”

She therefore stated that the medical directors will not hesistate to go to the Supreme Court to fight for their rights.

Officials of AMAC were not present in the court.

The matter was adjourned until February 1, 2018 for hearing.

by Premium Times

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