Ogun State Governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun, on Tuesday revealed that his administration has carried out several tax and financial reforms to eliminate bottlenecks and enhance the Ease of Doing Business in the State.
The Governor stated this on Tuesday in Lagos while speaking at the investiture of Mrs. Olujumoke Eyitayo as the President, Institute of Chartered Accountant of Nigerian (ICAN), assuring that the state under his watch has reformed and harmonise the tax system as well as levies in order to eliminate multiple taxation.
Noting that the state government is in partnership with the private sector on many fronts, Abiodun explained that the focus of his administration is premised on the ISEYA mantra, which stands for Infrastructure, Social Wellbeing, Education, Youth Empowerment and Agriculture.
He added that the tax reforms would make the tax regime very transparent and provide for online payment and filling of tax returns.
“We have also implemented the International Public Sector Accounting System (IPSAS), the TSA system, Billing and Payment Management System (BPMS) as part of reforms of our financial system”, the governor noted.
He listed other elements of the financial reforms to include adoption of the Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF), the Medium Term Revenue Strategy (MTRS) and the establishment of the Fiscal Responsibility Commission.
All these, he explained, were to ensure prudent financial management and the efficient allocation of government resources, to provide long term stability for the economy.
“We’ve also introduced the Bureau of Statistics and employed the first Statistician General, to enable the state to be armed with accurate financial and economic data”, he hinted.
Abiodun lauded ICAN for its contributions to national development, saying that the professional body has continued to set standards for accounting practice.
He further observed that the new ICAN President’s brilliant antecedence while chairing different committees of the professional body stood her out for the current position.
In his speech, the Governor of Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, represented by the Commissioner for Finance, Mr. Rabiu Olowo, also commended the body for upholding the standard and professional ethics in both the public and private sectors, noting that the election of Mrs. Eyitayo was a befitting reward for her many years of contributions to the Institute.
While noting that his administration was open to new ideas, Sanwo-Olu said it was time for all hands to be on deck to address the many challenges facing the nation, expressing the hope that the mutual relationship between Lagos and the Institute would be sustained.
In a her acceptance speech, Eyitayo, said her investiture marked the fullfilment of a dream which spanned more than 40 years ago, adding that she was ready to serve with dignity and honour to reposition the profession which would be a pride to all professionals.
She declared that she would lead a crusade for a new and rejuvenated body by raising the quality of its professionals, address unemployment by creating a centre to train the youth to be self-reliant, sponsor more research works and liaise with the government to tackle economic downturn and insecurity.
While soliciting the support of all members to take the body to greater heights, the ICAN President said the professional body was aware of poverty and hunger in the land, adding that for the nation to survive, government must jettison the idea of spending over 17 percent of its budget on debt servicing.
In her valedictory speech, the outgone president, Mrs. Onome Adewoye, while highlighting some achievements recorded during her tenure, noted that the body carried out review of accounting syllabus of tertiary Institutions, conducted professional examinations with impressive number of candidates as well as enforcement of professional ethics.