By Emma Ujah
ABUJA â€” Federal Government Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs), including the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Central Bank (CBN), Corporate Affairs Commission and the National Assembly owe the Federal Fovernment the sum of N72 billion in unpaid taxes.
The management of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) has, therefore, constituted teams which have commenced a tax revenue drive among the organisations with a view to enforcing compliance.
Director of FCT/Special Tax Office, Abuja, Peter Olayemi, who led one of the teams told newsmen that the tax enforcement had become imperative owing to the uncooperative posture of many defaulting MDAs.
He regretted that such MDAs deducted various taxes such as Personal Income Tax, Withholding Tax and Value Added Tax but refused to remit the proceeds to the government through the FIRS.
According to Olayemi, â€œthe FIRS would no longer allow MDAs to deduct tax from staff, contractors, and other service providers and then retain such money for their use, contrary to the provisions of the tax laws.â€
The team that visited the NNPC secured a pledge that the oil corporation would commence payment of its debt of N200 million at the end of this month.
Similarly, the Corporate Affairs Commission promised to pay an initial N50 million of the N303 million it owed and to stagger the balance the coming months.
Mrs. Camilla Chuta, who led the team to National Assembly, Nigeria Universities Commission and the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development disclosed that the management of the National Assembly was owing N306 million made up of withholding tax â€” N22.43 million, Value Added Tax â€” N941,259 and Pay As You Earn, N188 million.
National Assembly officials promised to meet with officials of the FIRS for final reconciliation before effecting payment.
The team also visited the Nigeria Universities Commission (NUC) which owes over N513 million made up of Withholding Taxâ€” N253 million, Value Added Tax â€”Â N97 million and PAYE â€” N163 million.