The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) says a systemic abuse of the pioneer incentive scheme instituted by the Federal Government has led to tax revenue leakages for the three tiers of government. Mr Abdullahi Ahmad, the Director, Communications and Liaison Department, said this in a statement in Abuja on Friday.
Ahmad said the Executive Chairman, Mr Muhammad Nami, said this when he received states Commissioners for Finance who visited him in his office in Abuja. Nami pledged to block the tax revenue leakages to generate more revenue for the three tiers of government.
According to him, the tax revenue accounts for nearly 70 per cent of what have been shared at the last FAAC meeting and lauded the collaboration between the service and the States Commissioners of Finance.
This, Nami said, was key to bringing about increase in tax revenue.
He added that without this collaboration, it would be difficult for government to meet its obligations to the citizenry in areas like infrastructure development and salary payment, which he said could lead to social dislocation.
The executive chairman emphasised the need to diversify the economy in order to create more sources of taxable income and increase tax revenue for the nation.
He charged the states to focus on other forms of taxes like the Stamp Duty which he described as “the black gold” that had been ignored in the past. The chairman also charged all Ministries, Departments and Agencies to deduct Withholding Tax from contracts at point of payment.
Nami also solicited the states’ support in terms of taxpayer sensitisation campaigns and education, stating that rental obligation was incomplete without the payment of Stamp Duties. According to him, if these initiatives are pursued at both local and state levels, more revenue will be generated.