Niger Govt. Launch Tax Harmonization.

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Niger Government, on Tuesday, launched harmonization of revenue collection to reduce the multiplicity of taxes between the state and local governments.

Chairman of the State Internal Revenue Service, NGSIRS, Mohammed Etsu, said at the official launching of the scheme in Suleja it was at blocking leakages and boosting revenue generation in the state.

Mr Etsu, represented by Aminu Baba, acting Group Head of Tax Operation Group, NGSIRS, said that the effort was to make the revenue collection process less cumbersome and consolidated to attract more investors to the state.

“The practice in the past was that the state government would come and collect taxes, levies, and charges and the local government staff would also come to collect their own.

“At the end of the day, you will see so much uncertainty in the system on who is paying what and who is responsible for what.

“Tax harmonization will give a consolidated back notice containing all taxes, levies, and charges of what business owners are to pay to the state and local governments in a year,” he said.

According to Mr Etsu, all tax collections will henceforth be done through ICT platforms and point of sale, POS, terminals to give taxpayers the confidence that their monies are going directly into state government coffers.

He stated that the process would give taxpayers an idea of how much they were to pay for a year without having to live in fear of uncertainty, while it would also reduce the burden on them. Also speaking, the Chairman of Suleja Local Government Council, Ishaku Bawa, said tax harmonization was a welcome development, pledging his council’s adequate support to improve revenue generation for the state.

“We have already sensitized our people and various associations that cash collection as revenue is no longer accepted,” he said.

In his remarks, a consultant with NGSIRS, Masu Danjuma, said Governor Umaru Bago was poised to see the state becoming one of the top 10 revenue generation states in Nigeria.

Mr Danjuma said that Suleja was one of the areas that would help in achieving the ‘New Niger Agenda.

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