The Edo State government has terminated the appointment of Akugbe Ventures as government revenue collections agent.
Consequently, the firm is therefore banned from collecting taxes from motorists in the state. To this end, the state government urged all eligible taxpayers, especially those in the transport sector including others in the informal sector to file in tax returns where they could be assessed on the basis of their income, rather than subjecting themselves to unnecessary harassment and intimidation.
The Executive Chairman of the Edo State Internal Revenue Service (EIRS), Chief Sir Oseni Elamah handed down the ban during a Press briefing with Journalists in Benin City.
Chief Elamah who noted that the state government was determined to eradicate all forms of ticketing in line with the state governor’s inaugural vows, said besides Akugbe Ventures, the government’s ban on illegal collections of revenue on the road by various unions remains intact.
He said that the present administration was desirous in ensuring that only approved taxes are collected by the state and local governments through due process.
“This is to serve as warning to any person or groups that in whatever manner that nobody is authorized or mandated to act as revenue collections agent for either the state or local government,” said Chief Elamah.
The EIRS Chief who maintained that the extant laws prohibit the collections of government revenue by private consultants/agents unless as prescribed under the revenue laws/financial instruction as operated in the civil service. “We have served final notice on Akugbe Ventures that have been before now collecting taxes from road transport workers, Okada riders and all workers in the associated transportation industry.”
He therefore advised eligible taxpayers to visit any of the designated IGR bank to pay their taxes, visit any of the tax office with teller. Where they are expected to obtain official government treasury receipts to enable them carry out their transactions.
He said towards ensuring that taxpayers are captured in one identity, the Joint Tax Board (JTB) in collaboration with all 36 states Internal Revenue Services introduced the Tax Identification Number (TIN), such that all forms of alleged double taxation would be eliminated.
Chief Elamah stated that the TIN is a unique national identity card that will allow taxpayers to do business anywhere in the country without being subjected to double taxation.
He urged taxpayers to register for and obtain the TIN, adding that it is free.
He pointed out that in the course of tax reforms and implementing tax policies, the federal government had put in place presumptive tax regime.
He said the system which is an advance form of best of judgment allows tax officers to use their best judgment where in they are unable to assess taxpayer correctly on the basis of his/her income.
“Under the presumptive tax regime, especially those in the informal sector where records are not kept as to their income, it is to encourage them to keep basic form of records to enable tax officers assess them on the income they earn.”
He therefore announced that the state government has commenced the implementation of the presumptive tax regime mostly targeted at the informal sector.
He disclosed that the EIRS had earlier written to the security agents calling for the enforcement of the cashless revenue collections policy in the state.
He reiterated government’s ban on the issue of emblems/stickers, saying that such emblems and stickers are issued through the EIRS offices across the state upon the completion of vehicle registration, just as he restated that vehicle particulars, hackney permit, drivers licence road worthiness certificate are also issued through the EIRS offices.