FIRS generates N27bn from tax penalty waiver

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Ifeanyi Onuba, Abuja

The Executive Chairman, Federal Inland Revenue Service, Mr. Tunde Fowler, has said that the agency realised the sum of N27.08bn from the waiver of tax penalty and interest programme.

The FIRS Chairman disclosed this in Abuja during the oversight visit by the House of Representatives Committee on Finance to the agency.

Last year, the FIRS gave a 45-day window from October 5 to November 24, for taxpayers owing tax liabilities, inclusive of interest and penalty for three years (2013 to 2015), to come forward and pay a minimum of 25 per cent of their actual tax liabilities and spread the balance, while the penalty and interest were waived.

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The waiver programme, which came after due consultation with relevant stakeholders, was part of  the Federal Government’s efforts to reduce the burden of tax liabilities on taxpayers, promote voluntary compliance and shield taxpayers from the burden of carrying forward old liabilities  accruing from penalty and interest.

A statement by the FIRS on Tuesday said the N27.086bn realised from the tax waiver programme came from the payment of the minimum of 25 per cent of the principal of the outstanding tax liabilities between 2013 and 2015, and continued payment of agreed instalments.

Fowler, according to the statement, said more revenue was being expected from the payment of the principals in instalments.

The FIRS chairman stated that 2,735 taxpayers applied under the tax waiver programme, adding that the 2017 revenue generation prospect of the agency was bright.

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