IGR collection, a collective responsibility –Expert

IGR collection, a collective responsibility –Expert

Business News

IGR collection, a collective responsibility –Expert

…As PERL organizes sensitization workshop 

By Muhammad Hamisu Abdullahi

For a country or state to make any breakthrough in generating revenue, it must note that collecting it is a collective responsibility whether at state or national level.

The revelation was made by the Director, Government Business at the Kano State Internal Revenue Service (KIRS), Malam Abdulkadir Abdussalam at a sensitization workshop on Internally Generated Revenue Drive and Service Provision organized for citizens’ groups by DFID-Partnership to Engage, Reform and Learn (PERL) recently in Kano metropolis.

Malam Abdussalam, who lectured on the ‘Role of Citizens’ Groups in Improving IGR at the Community Level,’ added that even though the revenue collection was rested on internal revenue boards or services, but individuals could be made to help in the IGR collection.

As it is envisaged that in the next few years, the country will be third to China and India in terms of population size, with an example of Kano’s population size, which increases almost day by day due to marriages and migration of displaced persons from troublesome areas, he said proper planning was needed to cater for the population.

He highlighted that only revenue generation can help to achieve the above objective.

He however noted that the nation keeps increasing its budget, but almost in deficit yearly, noting further that it has to borrow to fill in the gap, pointing out that if IGR could not cater for the nation’s budget deficit, then it may find itself in trouble.

IGR collection, a collective responsibility –Expert

He reiterated that IGR generation at all levels of governance is a vital tool for development, stressing that how taxes are raised and spent would always repose confidence in public, saying that since the IGR is said to be a collective duty, the community should team up to work together to compliment government in providing services, explaining that paying taxes is a civic responsibility to the citizens that would guarantee distribution of income among them.

Abdussalam also noted inefficient tax distribution system at the three tiers of government, saying that proper assessment was needed before charging for taxes.

He explained that for things to go right in tax collection, governments must ensure fairness and equity in the exercise, build the trust and ensure high level of engagement of citizens in budget preparation or circle.

He stressed the need for harmonization of taxes between the state and local governments in order to enhance revenue generation in the state, informing the gathering that already the state House of Assembly has recalled all the laws on taxes with a view to achieving the objective in collaboration with KIRS.

He advised that the citizens, community based organizations and civil society organizations should understand the laws of collecting the taxes, stressing that the citizens need to be acquainted with the laws of taxes, calling for a synergy in order to engage stakeholders for effective and efficient IGR collection and remittances in the state.

Earlier in his welcome address, the State Team Leader of PERL, Malam Jibrin Ali Giginyu, stressed the need for tax for service so as to enhance revenue generation, noting that Lagos State generates revenue to the tune of over N30 billion monthly.

Malam Giginyu said as local government areas are the most nearest to the people, their revenue base should be enhanced, hoping that the discussion would help a lot in enhancing the revenue generation of the state.

He said participants were drawn from traders associations, traditional institution, civil society organizations, media, community based organizations, relevant ministries, to include that of planning and budget; departments and agencies.

Giginyu gave the objectives of the event as to strengthen community based organisations’ skills and understanding on IGR; and to identify areas where stakeholders from local governments can effectively engage community members for improved IGR respectively.

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