By Marie-Therese Nanlong – Jos
The Plateau State Internal Revenue Service, PSIRS has surpassed its revenue target by over N500m and promised that despite scourge of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Service would evolve strategies to ensure that revenues are harnessed and collected from the few economic activities that are ongoing in the State.
Chairman of the Service, Dashe Arlat disclosed this while giving a presentation of the second and third quarter reports where he stated the Service has been encouraged by the feat achieved as a fresh target of N18bn has been set for year 2021.
Giving a breakdown of achievements in the quarters, Arlat despite being considerate to taxpayers due to the prevailing COVID-19 disease, the Service engaged in tax audit and investigations, intensified tax assessment both at the headquarters and zonal offices; taxpayer education and sensitization; sustained engagements with business community, trade unions and associations; increased enforcement in the informal and formal sectors as well as engage in aggressive monitoring and evaluation of performance within the year.
He noted, “State IGR target was put at N22bn with PSIRS target pegged at N16bn in 2020. The grand total of IGR from first to third quarter is N16,446,960, 604.99 because we deployed some strategies and policies to achieve the feat.
“The COVID-19 pandemic is affecting the world and Nigeria in various ways and has resulted in unforeseen and devastating health and economic consequences.
“With the unprecedented drop of crude oil prices that resulted in the drop in statutory revenue allocation to the State, taxation and charging fees for services have become a ready-made alternative source of revenue.
“This has become a challenge with the attendant lockdowns and semi lockdowns across the States and country stifling economic activities in an effort to keep citizens safe from the dreaded COVID-19.
“Strategies must be evolved to ensure that revenues are harnessed and collected from the little activities going on even amidst the pandemic to keep the wheels of government turning to meet the needs of the people.
“A post pandemic strategy must be developed and deployed to ensure activities resume seamlessly after the pandemic has abated even as we set a target of N18bn for the year 2021.”