Written by Sarah NEGEDU

Tax evasion: 40,000 millionaires on FIRS watch-list

The Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS, has sought the support of the Nigerian Police Force to go after at least 40, 000 millionaire tax defaulters.

Executive chairman of the service, Mr. Tunde Fowler, while expressing commitment of the FIRS to go after wealthy tax defaulters this year, said already the service had realized the sum of N23billion after taking closer look at the books of 45,000 tax debtors.

Fowler disclosed this when he received the Acting Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, who paid a courtesy visit on him.

He informed the police boss that each of the 45,000 tax debtors investigated had over N100million as turnover in their accounts.

The chairman therefore requested the police to assist the service to bring the tax defaulters to pay their taxes.

He said, “We looked at businesses, partnerships of any activity that has banking turnover between N100million and N999million. We have done a review of this group of businesses.

“We have about seven more banks that we are still waiting for the return from and to review their information.

“So far, we have 45,361 that have TIN and are making payments. We have 40,611 that have TIN, that made tax payment and, and we have 44,504 that have no TIN and no payment.

“So, when you look at it from a glance, we have close to 75,000 in this group that are still not taxpayers and we have said the payment of tax is not only for the civil servants. its for all Nigerians.

“So, the millionaires and the billionaires will pay tax on behalf of what is due to the national coffers.”

Fowler commended the police for its support and collaboration over the years, which he said, had helped FIRS to achieve its target and requested for more support to enable it to recover taxes due to rich tax evaders in 2019.

“Let me put on record that the Nigeria Police Force has been extremely helpful to FIRS. Without the Police, I doubt that the Service would have been able to achieve what we have achieved.

“2018 was a successful year. The FIRS collected a total of N5.32trillion of tax revenue. This is the highest revenue collection in the history of FIRS.”

In his part, the acting IGP said the Police would continue to support the FIRS because the job of revenue generation was critical to the survival of the nation.

“We feel that the work you do is one of the most important for the survival of the country. And you need to be supported from all angles so that you can achieve what you want to achieve to the benefit of every Nigerian.

“We will continue to work with you to improve security so that people would do their businesses here, make profits and pay their taxes.

“We believe that with the new management team of the Nigeria Police Force, which is adopting community policing, we would be able to improve security.”    

 

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