The Oyo State government has concluded plans to commence re-energized enforcement of tax laws in the state beginning from Wednesday, August 17, 2016. The inter-ministerial committee on the IGR drive would start scheduled visits to small, medium and large scale enterprises as well as the informal sector to demand evidence of tax payment in the last three years.
The state governor, Abiola Ajimobi, however assured residents of the state that the tax drive would not create hardship for the people, explaining that, the government was only blocking the loopholes affecting the state’s economy.
Ajimobi, who spoke through the Commissioner of Information, Culture and Tourism, Mr. Toye Arulogun, on Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN), Ibadan, stressed that the government was simply enforcing already existing tax laws in the state, and not introducing new ones.
He appealed to industries and establishments in the state to co-operate with government officials who would be going round to carry out the assignment, adding that, government’s plans to make life meaningful for residents, through the judicious use of tax collected from them would be achieved
“What we are doing is backed by law. We are not introducing a new thing, we are only trying to enforce payment of tax through our Board of Internal Revenue (BIR). We have met with associations and market leaders intimating them of government’s improved tax drive and they showed readiness to cooperate with us during the engagement”
“Some citizens are law-abiding and they pay their taxes, levies and duties when due but some have decided not to. It is the civic responsibility of every citizen to pay tax.
“Over the years, we have not been fully enforcing the tax laws in the state. Most states of the federation were comfortable with the revenue from the Federal Government but now that the economy is dwindling, we have to look inward and increase our Internally Generated Revenue (IGR). I assure you that we are not going to create unnecessary hardship for the people.”
According to the governor, the increase in revenue generation would lead to increase in developmental projects in the state; salaries and allowances of government workers would also be adequately taken of.
Ajimobi also expressed government’s empathy with corporate bodies, associations, market men and women and individuals on the high cost of living in the nation.