The Federal Inland Revenue Service has on Monday said as of the end of October this year, it had generated N4.178 trillion out of the target of N4.23 trillion for the same period.
This was disclosed by the Coordinating Director, Tax Operations Group of the FIRS, Mr Femi Oluwaniyi, in Abuja during an interactive session the Executive Chairman of the FIRS had with media houses.
According to Oluwaniyi, the amount generated represented 99 percent of the target for the period. He said the target for the whole year was N5.76 trillion.
The FIRS spokesman said despite the lockdown occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Service was able to generate N762bn between April and May, 2020.
Earlier, FIRS Executive Chairman Muhammad Nami, said out of the N6.16 trillion which the Federation Accounts Allocation Committee shared to the three tiers of government from January to October this year, the FIRS alone contributed N3.8 trillion.
The FIRS boss, however, decried that big men were evading taxes. He cited an example of some service providers in Lagos which, he said, were found to be collecting billions of naira VAT without remittance.
We’re actually not sleeping over it, and we’re not trying to ignore the fact that there are big men in this country that are evading taxes. But from the way we’re going, we have what we call multiplier effects, even in business investments, in typical investment scheme. So, it’s one thing that leads to the other.
“So, what we’ve done is to empower enforcement support groups to leverage one, on technology and second, on stakeholders’ collaborations for information sharing. What we’ve just concluded one investigation in Lagos State; that is why I had been, myself in Lagos, for one week.
“We discovered that there are service providers, let’s not be specific, who work for some of our taxpayers to collect VAT, but they don’t remit. But assessments have been raised in billions of naira and have been sent to them,” he said.
Nami said he “met a lot of debts N20bn and what we’ve prioritized is paying them in installments and as it is today, we’ve gone past re-paying about 50% of that debt. That was what we saw officially. Unofficially, we met a debt of about N18bn which was borrowed from our Special Projects Account.”
He said since he assumed office, he had leveraged on the experiences of his team to come up with strategies to move tax administration forward.