FG Pays N157.35B P.A.Y.E Tax Arrears To States

The Federal Government has paid the sum of N157.35 billion PAYE (Pay As You Earn) tax liabilities owed by Federal Ministries, Departments and Agencies, MDAs to states.

Tunde Fowler, Executive Chairman, Federal Inland Revenue Service and Chairman of the Joint Tax Board, JTB said this today in Awka.

The amount, Fowler disclosed, represented outstanding liabilities of PAYE by federal MDAs to State Governments from 2002 to 2016.
A total of N23.87 billion of the N157.35 billion went to States in the South-East Geopolitical Zone.

Fowler who was speaking at the South-East Geopolitical Zone leg of the Flag-Off of the New National Taxpayer Identification Number, TIN Registration System at the Dora Akunyili Women Development Centre, in Awka, Anambra State,expressed optimism that the remittance to states will encourage State Governments to reciprocate and promptly remit all Withholding Taxes and VAT due to the Federation Account.

“Over the last four years, the economic policies of the current administration has focused on establishing a stable foundation for further socio-economic growth and development, and with the astute leadership of Mr. President, the milestones achieved bears ample testimony on the impact that has been made, not only in tax-revenue administration, but in the environment of doing business in Nigeria.” Fowler said.

Fowler listed some of the achievements of the JTB and the FIRS in the last few years to include the following:
i. Expansion of the tax base from 10 million to 20 million taxpayers with
the potential for an increase of up to 45 million before year end;
ii. Exponential growth in the IGR collection at the sub-national level by
46.11% from N800.02 billion in 2016 to N1.16 trillion in 2018;
iii. Growth in FIRS collections by 53.81% from N3.30 trillion in 2016 to
N5.32 trillion in 2018; with the 2018 total collection of N5.32 trillion being the highest collection ever in the history of FIRS, while Non-Oil Revenue, with a collection of N2.85 trillion accounted for 54% of total revenue collection;
v. Consistent upward progression in the World Bank ‘Ease of Doing Business’ ranking, that saw the country move up 16 places in the recently released 2020 Report from 146th position to 131st position; thus, making the country one of the top 20 reformers globally.

Fowler at the event noted the industry and diligence of the people of Anambra State all in the bid to move the state forward. “But the government needs your continued support by continuous and prompt payment of taxes so that the good work can continue to depend on donor funds and aids.”

We need to generate our own revenue. And the only way we can do that is through prompt payment of our taxes.

“The future of our country is in our hands.. Nigeria and the whole of African cannot continue to rely on AIDS donation and handouts from developed countries.

Fowler stated that today’s launching in Awka was the third in the series of
Flag off exercise, having launched two others in South-West in Lagos State, and in the North-Central in Ilorin, Kwara State.

FIRS Boss further stated that the new TIN system improve on the efficiency and output of the entire tax administration process, and it is also meant to provide enhanced convenience to the taxpayers as well as the tax administrators, while guaranteeing that each taxpayer’s details are readily available to them at their fingertips at all times and anywhere.

“A major feature of the New System is that it possesses the capability to
Integrate with all relevant agencies by leveraging on already captured
Data. With its ability to deploy analytics to discover underlying correlating trends and patterns, better visibility of the taxpayer is assured inherently leading to increased Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) for all tiers of government. Thus, the new system reduces the burden of taxpayer information management, while at the same time significantly reducing the cost of collection.

“The new system maintains the identification of an individual taxpayer via the assigning of a unique and universal Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN); however, unlike the old system, it is now possible for any taxpayer to view, retrieve or update his/her tax profile from anywhere 24/7.”

The FIRS boss celebrated the attainments of the Anambra State Internal Revenue Service (AIRS) has displayed a penchant for breaking boundaries in terms of its capacity to grow IGR.

“With just over N10.4 billion collected as IGR in 2014, collections have grown by 84.6% as at 2018, with a total annual collection of N19.3 billion collected as IGR for the year.

This positive trend is also set to continue in 2019 as a comparative look at the half year figures for 2019 indicate a 22.9% growth over the correlating period for 2018, with the sum of N8.68 billion collected as at June 2019 as against N7.06 billion which was reported as at the same period in 2018..

“Having achieved all these while still tied to the apron strings of the mainstream civil service, it interesting to consider what the performance would be were the AIRS to enjoy an autonomous status in its financial and administrative operations.

“A look at the IGR performance of the South-East geopolitical zone also show encouraging growth trends as the cumulative collection of N77.31 billion for the year 2018 was a 16.66% improvement of the N66.27 billion collected in 2017. The year 2019 is looking quite positive as well as already, the sum of N42.98 billion has already been reported for the half year period. This represents an 18.1% growth over the N36.4 billion recorded for the half year period of 2018.

“As the States within the Region continue to aspire towards accomplishing greater things in terms of the raising IGR in a sustainable and inclusive manner, the new is designed to support such efforts by consolidating on the efficiency and effectiveness of their respective tax administration processes.

He thanked the partners and collaborating agencies; Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC), Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System (NIBSS), Nigeria Identity Management Commission (NIMC), Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), as well as our Consultants for their cooperation and professionalism leading to the project and event.

Fowler said that the common purpose of ensuring a more friendly tax environment in the country, and achieving the laudable objectives of the various socio-economic initiatives of Mr. President such as the Strategic Revenue Growth Initiative, Ease of Doing Business and the Economic and Recovery Growth Plan will continued to be helped by such collaborative efforts.
Governor of Anambra State, Willie Obiano who was represented by the Deputy Governor, Dr. Sam Okeke, launched the Anambra Stamp Duty Revenue Stamps, which he said was part of the innovations, which the Chairman of the Anambra Revenue Service, Dr. David Nzekwu introduced.

The Governor stated that Anambra State which was first in the nation in security, first in tourism attractiveness was also deepening its attention to data, both of taxable and non-taxable citizens of the state.

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