FIRS, EFCC partner to track tax defaulters

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The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) and Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) are to deepen and strengthen their collaboration to track both individuals and organisations who refuse to pay the right taxes.

During a courtesy visit to the EFCC headquarters in Abuja, yesterday, Executive Chairman of FIRS, Tunde Fowler, said the partnership will beam searchlights on defaulting taxpayers who also refused to rely on the Federal Government’s tax amnesty programme, Voluntary Assets and Income Declaration Scheme (VAIDS), to offset their tax liabilities. He said Nigeria, just like other countries across the world, is looking inwards to raise the economic base and would not tolerate tax defaulters.

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Already, the FIRS-EFCC partnership has led to the recovery of the sum of N29 billion from withholding tax from banks and other financial institutions in the country between November 2017 and March 2018. Fowler said: “There are some issues of non-remittance of withholding tax, Value Added Tax (VAT) and Personal Income Tax. The EFCC has shown support before. When tax defaulters are invited to your office (EFCC), we see result. I don’t know how you do it but we see result.

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Recently, two banks came forward to comply on their own. I think that they must have heard words. We want joint assistance with EFCC, especially now that VAIDS is over, to make sure that all tax defaulters get the lawful treatment.

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“I want to let every taxable person in Nigeria know that we are ready to deploy all powers within our disposal to ensure that every tax defaulter is punished according to the law.” Acting Chairman of EFCC, Ibrahim Magu, said the Commission is ready to do more to bring culprits to book. “People are in a hurry to collect taxes but are reluctant to remit them.

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