The FCT Administration is insisting that the newly introduced revenue harmonisation in the FCT is non-discriminatory as the initiative involves all revenue generating agencies of the administration.
Permanent secretary, FCTA, Mr Olusade Adesola, said the harmonisation will not only consolidate revenues from the area councils but also all revenue generating agencies of the FCT Administration.
Adesola made the clarification, Monday, at a townhall meeting organised by the FCT Internal Revenue Service, FCT-IRS, to further harness stakeholders’ support for the implementation of the harmonization initiative.
Adesola was responding to an appeal by the Ona of Abaji, HRH Adamu Baba Yunusa, who asked that high earners like the Abuja Environmental Protection Board, VIO and DOAS be included in the harmonisation initiative.
The Ona, who was represented by the Sarkin Gabas Kaura, Adamu Shuaibu, said the inclusion of these agencies will encourage the councils and indigenes to fully support the initiative.
Meanwhile, the permanent secretary in his keynote address at the event, stressed that the harmonization drive is not just a routine administrative exercise but an initiative with tremendous potential to impact on the revenue drive of the territory.
“By simplifying and consolidating our revenue collection systems, we aim to attract more investment, stimulate economic growth, and create employment opportunities. This will enhance the FCT’s reputation as an investment-friendly destination and contribute to the overall development of the region.
“Furthermore, the harmonization initiative will promote fairness and equity in revenue collection. By ensuring that all eligible individuals and businesses contribute their fair share, we can distribute the burden of taxation more equitably and reduce the tax evasion that hampers revenue generation. This will enable us to provide essential services, infrastructure, and social amenities that improve the quality of life for all residents of the FCT.”
Earlier, the Executive Chairman of the FCT-IRS, Haruna Abdullahi, said the FCT-IRS Act entrusts the Service with the duty to collaborate with relevant stakeholders and agencies in harmonizing and improving tax practices.
Abdullahi, while speaking on the legal framework that guides the revenue harmonization initiative, noted that section 46 of the Act outlines the functions of the FCT Joint Revenue Committee to include, “harmonize tax administration in the FCT, deal with revenue matters of common concern to the FCT and Area Council,” among other functions.
The chairman, therefore, urged the stakeholders to keep these legal provisions in mind, “as they serve not just as our guide, but also as our commitment to fairness, efficiency, and collaboration.”