Enforcement of Income Tax and Revenue Acts
The Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Ezenwo Nyesom Wike, has taken a significant step to boost the territory’s revenue profile.
Wike’s Directive on Tax Compliance
In an October 4, 2023 memo, Wike directed all Ministries, Departments, and Agencies (MDAs), Commercial banks, as well as FCT Secretariats, Departments, and Agencies (SDAs) to ensure strict compliance with the laws, particularly Section 85 of the Personal Income Tax Act (PITA) and Section 31 of the FCT Internal Revenue Service Act 2015.
Statement from FCT Economic Planning Secretary
Speaking in a news conference on Monday, the Mandate Secretary of the FCT Economic Planning, Revenue Generation, and Public Private Partnerships Secretariat, Chinedum Elechi, disclosed that Wike had approved the implementation of Section 85 of the Personal Income Tax Act (PITA) and Section 31 of the FCT Internal Revenue Service Act, 2015.
Penalties for Tax Offenses
He explained that anyone who provides false information or obtains a Tax Clearance Certificate (TCC) through forgery or falsification would be liable upon conviction to a fine of N50,000 or a three-year jail term or both upon conviction.
He added that a government entity or organization that fails to verify a TCC before any transaction is liable to a fine of N5,000,000 or a three-year jail term or both upon conviction.
Tax Compliance in FCT
According to him, “Section 31 of the FCT-IRS Act provides that all SDAs, corporate bodies, or any person empowered by law shall demand a TCC from any person or enterprise for the last three years preceding the current year of assessment as a precondition for transacting any business in the FCT.”
Impact on Various Transactions
“The said transactions include Certificate of Occupancy, award of contracts, approval of building plans, application for FCTA loan for housing, business, or any other purpose, registration of motor vehicles, land applications, and a host of others.
The Civic Duty of Paying Taxes
“Taxes are essential to the foundation of any government, and it is important that everyone pays their fair share. Payment of tax is a civic duty and responsibility. Implementation of these laws is intended to ensure that all eligible taxpayers in the FCT comply with their tax obligations”.