The Arewa Youth Forum (AYF) on Monday commended the Executive Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Babatunde Fowler, for what they called “unprecedented record in the history of tax administration in FIRS and in Nigeria”.
Members of the National Executive Council of the group, who paid a courtesy visit to FIRS headquarters in Abuja, said that the expansion of Nigeria’s taxpayer’s base, inauguration of the new Taxpayer Identification Number Registration System and deployment of online solutions to ease tax payment were steps in the right direction.
National President of the Forum, Gambo Ibrahim Gujungu, promised that the AYF would continue to use their platforms to support Fowler’s good initiatives and those of the management of the Service.
He said: “It is on record that from your appointment till date, and with the support of your hardworking Management team and staff, Mr. Fowler has among other things achieved the following: expand our national tax base from 10 million to 20 million with a potential increase to 45 million; increase States’ Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) by over 46.11 percent, that is from N800bn in 2016 to N1.16 trillion in 2018; for the first time in history, the Federal Government paid all 15 years outstanding PAYE tax liabilities to MDAs; Nigeria was able to move up positively by 25 points in tax administration section of World Bank’s ‘Ease of Doing Business’.
“FIRS recorded the highest collection in history from N3.30 trillion in 2016 to N5.32 trillion in 2018 with the Non-Oil sector contributing almost 54 percent to our total revenue collection; launching of the Consolidated National Tax Base for ease of access to taxpayer information”, Gujungu added
The AYF leader noted further that the revenue agency had witnessed efficiency and effectiveness under the present chairman.
In his remarks, Fowler thanked the group leader and members for their kind words and promised that FIRS would continue to break new grounds in terms of innovations in tax administration.
He enthused: “Thank you for your kind words for FIRS, the prayers especially. Thank you for your promise to continue to support the payment of taxes. For us in FIRS, we see ourselves job as a call to national service and we will continue to play our part.
The tax expert explained that the deployment of online solutions was to make tax payment and administration convenient, transparent and efficient and urged taxpayers to make use of the solutions.