By Festus Fifen.
The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA), on Wednesday threatened serious sanctions against individuals, organisations and agencies violating its tax order, emphasizing that tax clearance certificates must now be presented before transactions within the Nigeria Federal Capital territory.
While emphasizing the huge expenditure the administration incures on provision of infrastructure and essential
services, the FCTA said residents have a lot to gain if taxes are paid regularly.
Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Mallam Muhammad Musa Bello, represented at a town hall meeting on the demand and verification of tax clearance certificates by Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs),commercial banks and corporate bodies before transactions, by the FCT permanent secretary, Olusola Adesola, in Abuja, threatened to commence immediate arrest and prosecution of tax evaders in the FCT.
In his words, ” I therefore, use this opportunity to send a note of strong warning to tax evaders to desist from their actions. Not only are their actions morally wrong as they ride on the sweat of others but their actions are also serious criminal offences
for which they can face very severe penalties on
they conviction.” Bello said.
He noted that the FCTA “has the mandate to build for our
nation a capital Territory that is comparable to the best in
the world. And for over four decades, we have delivered
on this mandate as Abuja has indeed turned out to be a
very beautiful city indeed as testified to severally by visitors
to the city.”
“It must however be admitted that if we are to continue too
provide world class infrastructure for the city, we need a
greatly improved revenue base which can only be
attained by a robust tax policy where all who call FCT
home also contribute through faxes to her development” the Minister added.
He however pledged to address issues of multiple taxation in the territory.
“We are not unmindful of complaints about multiple
taxation and other sundry challenges in our tax regime.
This matter is also of grave concern to us and we are taking
measures to resolve the issue because it also impacts
negatively on our efforts of encouraging investment in the
Executive Chairman of the FCT Inland Revenue Service, Haruna Abdullahi, in an earlier remark made it clear that the existing law provides that “failure to demand and verify a Tax Clearance Certificate presented by an individual is liable to sanctions and possible conviction with a fine of N5,000,000.00 (Five Million Naira) or three years imprisonment or both the fine and imprisonment”
” I would urge all residents and relevant stakeholders to choose voluntary compliance over compulsion.
I would like to briefly reiterate; it is imperative that a Tax Clearance Certificate (TCC) is demanded as a pre-condition for various transactions in the FCT and it is instructive to note that the law requires such from Government Ministries, Departments, Agencies and Commercial Banks.” He stressed.
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