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DEEPEN trains private school owners, others to end illegal taxation

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DFID


To end the problem of multiple and illegal taxation in Lagos State, Developing Effective Private Education Nigeria (DEEPEN), an innovative programme of the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID), has educated private school owners, business development service providers, as well as media and civil society organisations on how to promptly and efficiently pay their taxes to authorities without being tricked.

The organisation, which offered comprehensive training on taxation for the school owners under the umbrella body of the National Association of Proprietors of Private Schools (NAPPS) in Lagos as well as other stakeholders, provided facts and guidelines with taxes that are applicable to private schools.

The capacity building workshop extensively addressed the issue of illegal taxation of private schools in Lagos state, educating participants on how to end such scenarios, as well as avoid penalties and interests.

Recall that the issue of multiple and illegal taxation has been a major problem for private school owners for years now.  The DEEPEN team upon realising that lack of knowledge about taxes is responsible for the act, took it upon itself to research, document and educate the proprietors about taxes, what should be paid, when it should be paid and how they are different from dues, levies, charges, fines and penalties.

The objective of DEEPEN project is to improve learning outcomes in Lagos private schools and also promote better business environment for private schools to thrive and contribute to socio-economic growth.

Speaking at the occasion, DEEPEN Team Leader, Dr. Gboyega Ilusanya, said the training is aimed at providing information to people on what they need to know about taxation so as not to be defrauded by fake government officials.

The tax publication, tagged “Tax Guide for Private Schools,” he said will be made available for free in hard copy and online so school owners would know and not be cheated any longer.

DEEPEN Consultant for the programme, Habiba Balogun stressed that paying taxes is something that companies or business owners must do to boost government revenue and stimulate economic growth of the country.

“For private schools whose intention is to make profit, they will pay tax and dues to the government. Tax is of different stages, federal, state and local government. If you have not been paying tax do not wait until you are caught in the act.”

However, companies in agricultural businesses or with a minimum of 25per cent imported equity or those in their first four calendar years of commencement are exempted from paying taxes, she added.Also, Director, Personal Income Tax, Lagos State Internal Revenue Service (LIRS), Mrs Folashade Coker-Afolayan pointed out that tax payment is important for the growth of the nation especially in providing revenues for the government to perform its statutory functions and responsibilities to the citizens.

According to her, it is also important for school owners to keep records of tax payments and maintain good accounting when doing their business because it will give them the opportunity to know if gain or loss are been made.

“The filing requirement for CIT is self assessment, audited accounts. Failure to file tax return attracts penalty of 25,000, late payment/non-payment of tax is 10per cent.

This training is to guide you and educate you to keep record of everything going on in your organization, and pay your tax with ease”, she said.
She urged them not to panic on receipt of tax letters or demand notices rather, they should make reference to relevant tax laws and consultations for proper interpretation of such demand notice.


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