Nigeria’s sole tax institute gets new leadership
Somorin emerges second female boss at CITN
THE Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (CITN) has elected new officers to steer the affairs of the Institute for the next two years, following the successful conduct of its 23rd yearly general meeting.
The leadership baton was officially passed on to Dr. Olateju Abiola Somorin, by the immediate past President, Chief Mark Anthony Dike, as the 12th President and second female to ascend the elite position of the institute.
Somorin was unanimously elected at an Extra-Ordinary Council Meeting held at the Secretariat of the Institute, with other elected officers of council- Chief Cyril Ikemefuna Ede as Vice President; Ms. Gladys Olajumoke Simplice, Deputy Vice President; and Adesina Adedayo, who returned unopposed as the Honorary Treasurer.
Somorin popularly known as “TEJUTAX”, started her academic career at the Methodist Girls High School, Yaba, Lagos, where she graduated as the Best Form V Student (1968 in Arts Class) and also served as the School Prefect.
In 1975, she obtained a Bachelor of Art Degree in English from the University of Lagos and one of the first Nigerian females with an M.TAX degree in Tax Administration from the University of Paris (1983).
She joined the then Federal Inland Revenue Department, now Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) in 1976, and rose to the position of Acting Coordinating Director before she retired in 2010, as the third in the management hierarchy of FIRS, after 34 years, 17 of which were on the Directorate level.
She is an experienced Tax Administrator with in-depth knowledge of the Nigerian tax system and one of the few Nigerian women who have carved a niche in the sphere of taxation, an area, which is ordinarily dominated by men.
Somorin is the 24th member to be conferred with the status of a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria, having served as member, vice-chairman, chairman of nearly all the committees of council and was the first chairman of Abuja District Society and the pioneer Dean of Tax Administration Faculty.
A Life Patron of Society of Women in Taxation, she was the longest-serving Board Secretary of Federal Board of Inland Revenue, now FIRS Board, a position she held for 15 years during which she participated in the production of most of the FIRS Information Circulars and other Technical Circulars.
The first female to head the defunct Middle-East Zone, the Procurement Division, Corporate Affairs Branch, first female Secretary, Ministerial Tenders Board, Secretary Management Committee, first Chairman, Editorial Board of Nigerian Tax News, Secretary to the Technical Committee of the Board, Secretary to the VAT Technical Committee and of the FIRS at the One Stop Investment Centre (OSIC), she also became the first woman to occupy the seat of President of West African Union of Tax Institutes (WAUTI).
An astute writer of Board Minutes, Reports and Communiqués; some of her key achievements at FIRS included the production of Enforcement Manual, HR Policies, Conditions of Service and Handing-Over Notes Manual. As Director HR, she and her team drove the successful HR Reform Project of FIRS, and in April 2008, under her leadership, the HR SAP Module was deployed. In addition, she organized a distinct Award Ceremony for long-standing staff and retired staff.