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Publish your tax agenda, FIRS tells political parties

Publish your tax agenda, FIRS tells political parties

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Feyisayo Popoola

The Federal Inland Revenue Service has demanded that political parties publish their tax agenda before and during campaigns for the 2019 elections.

According to the Chairman, FIRS, Mr. Babatunde Fowler, the core mandate of the agency is to enforce the payment of taxes by individuals, corporate organisations and government institutions.

Fowler, while speaking at the launch of the Andersen Tax in Nigeria in Lagos, stated that the FIRS as a body was paying taxes, adding that he saw no reason why political parties and other governmental organisations should refuse to pay taxes.

He said the government and all related entities ought to comply with tax laws in order to set good examples for others to follow.

Fowler stated that the fight against corruption should start with the accountability of the government, adding that citizens must be given value for the taxes they were paying.

According to him, the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan shows a huge infrastructure deficit.

He added that Nigeria would need to invest £30bn to correct the deficit, stating that effective tax payment and collection could reduce the amount required.

Fowler stated that the major problem associated with developing countries was that people fail to realise the impact of non-payment of taxes.

The FIRS boss said over 15,000 non-compliance stickers were pasted on identifiable business premises in 2017 and that the agency, through that action, was able to recover N35.65bn.

Fowler stated that the major thing the country was lacking was infrastructure, adding that taxes would go a long way in generating revenue for the government to execute infrastructural projects.

He said, “A robust tax system is the foundation of sustainable economic growth. According to reports by the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, there is an association between the level of tax revenue generated and sustainable growth.”

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