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CSO describes tax system outdated, seeks review

By Sodiq Omolaoye, Abuja
21 September 2021   |   3:03 am
A civil Society Organisation, the Association of Concerned Citizens of Nigeria on Revenue and Economy (ACCNRE) has said Nigeria is operating a 1939 outdated taxation law

[FILES] Tax filings

A civil Society Organisation, the Association of Concerned Citizens of Nigeria on Revenue and Economy (ACCNRE) has said Nigeria is operating a 1939 outdated taxation law that must be overhauled for an effective tax system.

The organisation argued that an efficient taxation system is capable of fostering the development of the country.

Speaking at a news conference recently in Abuja, the National Coordinator of the association, Orji Orji, said Nigeria’s current taxation system is no longer obtainable anywhere else in the world, noting that the country must learn from other nations on how to effectively mobilise revenue.

“How to achieve this is simply to have a restructured tax administration, by having the tax collectors (FIRS) and independent auditors and investigators, in other words, external scrutinizers, the National Inspector General for Tax Crime (NIGTCC), if enacted.

“Our legislatures should know that our few enemies are winning some of our people’s loyalty because of the poor economy, which can be mitigated through a well restructured proactive taxation system”, he stated.

Orji, therefore, called on the National Assembly to fast track the NIGTCC bill before it.

This, he said, would propel a transparent tax system that would ensure that the method of using anti-graft agencies to go after taxpayers is no longer needed.

He added: “A good taxation system is a cause that must be achieved for the security of our unborn children. A bad taxation system is a threat to human rights, security, democracy and economy and a weak taxation system are more dangerous than a pandemic.

“Countries copy the tax system from other nations to understand how to mobilise revenue. In Nigeria, many people don’t pay tax and there are also challenges of multiple taxations.

“External scrutinizers like NIGTCC will close the gap between FIRS and taxpayers. This is because when there is no moderator there will be excesses in the area of collection. I want to say the 1939 taxation law is against the public and government.”

“The area we are covering in taxation is not more than 40 per cent. That is why I said inspection and evaluation is key to tax. Without this, tax policies may be against the citizens and government”.

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