FIRS considers collection of road tax from hairdressers and carpenters

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Muhammad Nami, the executive chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), has revealed the agency’s goal to involve the informal sector in the construction of a modern society.

Nami, who hosted a delegation from the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) led by National President Chris Isiguzo in his Abuja office, said the proposed road infrastructure levy will provide the government with adequate resources for road building, rehabilitation, and maintenance.

In a statement made by the FIRS chairman’s media aide Johannes Wojuola, it was also said that the initiative will provide the country’s highways with the necessary protection.

He stated;

“The only way to make the informal sector contribute to building a modern society is by making them pay when they use the roads.

“That is why we are proposing that government should consider introducing Road Infrastructure Tax in Nigeria.

“In many jurisdictions, road users pay for the use of road infrastructure as such it shouldn’t be seen as an additional burden on our citizens because it has the potential of making life better for all of us.

“Without the tax that you pay, governments at all levels would not be able to fulfil their mandate to the electorates. Tax money also helps to ensure the roads you travel are safe and always in good condition.”

Despite sharp practices by some companies who were in the habit of evading taxes by shifting their capital and profits to tax havens, as well as low revenue from Petroleum Profit Tax due to a shortfall in crude oil production among other factors, Nami stated that the economy now relies heavily on non-oil revenues to discharge its statutory responsibility of paying salaries and providing social amenities to the citizenry.

He added;

“Without the tax that you pay, governments at all levels would not be able to fulfil their mandate to the electorates. Tax money also helps to ensure the roads you travel are safe and always in good condition.

“Adopting technology in tax administration is crucial in improving domestic revenue mobilisation in view of dwindling oil prices in order to avoid falling into a debt crisis. It is against this backdrop that the TaxPro-Max became the channel for filing Naira-denominated tax returns effectively from 7th June 2021.

“The TaxPro-Max enables seamless registration, filing of returns, payment of taxes and automatic credit of withholding tax as well as other credits to the Taxpayer’s accounts, among other features. The technology also provides a single-view to Taxpayers for all transactions with the Service.”

Nami also said that the FIRS collected N4.2 trillion between January and September 2021 as VAT, following the “successful facilitation of ISO 27001:2013 Certification of the FIRS’ Exchange of Information Centre and the achievement of 114.66 percent of the VAT collection target in the first half of the year”

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