Respites may be coming the way of private sector operatives who have been under the burden of multiple taxation following directive by President Bola Tinubu that the recommendations by the Presidential Fiscal Policy and Tax Reform Committee be implemented by all Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) of the federal government.
Besides, the economy may witness improved revenue as part of the recommendation was blocking of loopholes and ensuring effective tax administration by taxing appropriate people and institutions as well as widening the dragnet.
Despite the shortcomings of the existing policy that taxes both the ‘seed and the fruits’ in some instances, Nigeria’s current tax-to-GDP ratio stands at 10.86 percent and is considered to be below Africa’s average.
Tinubu’s directive followed the submission of the committee’s report on ‘quick-win’ achievements by its chairman, Taiwo Oyedele, at the State House in Abuja.
In a statement to the press following the meeting, Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Ajuri Ngelale, said the president had directed his Adviser on Policy Coordination, Hadiza Bala Usman, to liaise with the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) and Oyedele to give effect to the directive.
He explained that the order to fully implement the recommendations throughout government institutions aims to guarantee a cohesive and seamless implementation process.
Additionally, he revealed that the President is committed to prioritizing the presentation of these recommendations during the next Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting scheduled for the upcoming Monday.
He said, “After listening to a presentation by the committee chairman, the President directed the Special Adviser to the President on Policy Coordination, Hadiza Bala Usman, to liaise with the Secretary to the Government of the Federation and the Chairman of the Tax Policy Review Committee to ensure that the recommendations of the committee are swiftly and immediately implemented across all ministries, departments, and agencies of the federal government to ensure that there is effective synergy and to ensure that every institution of the federal government is on the same page with respect to how tax policy will be implemented.
“Henceforth, His Excellency Mr. President has also made available an opportunity for the recommendations of the tax policy review committee to be made a top priority at the next sitting of the Federal Executive Council meeting on Monday. Mr. President will continue to emphasise the importance of ensuring that our tax authorities are not taxing the seed but are taxing the fruit and that will continue to be the focus.”
In July, President Tinubu appointed Taiwo Oyedele to chair the Presidential committee on fiscal policy and Tax reforms.
The committee was made up of officials from the public and private sectors as well as civil society groups and students.
The mandate of the committee was to fine-tune the country’s fiscal policy, tax laws, regulations and harmonisation of tax collection. The goals were to achieve an appreciable tax-to-GDP ratio of 18%, reduce multiple taxation, and tax evasion, and foster a healthy tax culture.