All is set for Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) to dispose properties of 52 companies over tax defaults valued at about N3.4 billion. Though, FIRS’ Legal Department was said to have already begun the process of selling these properties.
It was learnt that apart from the 52 companies, 10 other companies are still under investigation for tax evasion while enforcement action is expected to be carried out on another 10 companies in Lagos with a total tax value of N727.42 million.
FIRS’ steps at ensuring tax compliance
Based on an investigation conducted by the FIRS, some private organisations that own properties in Nigeria had not been paying any form of taxes. Following this discovery, the agency took a review of all properties that were under corporate ownership.
By law, where a company has not filed or paid any taxes, the tax authority used an estimated assessment based on the company’s turnover.
In order to ascertain the level of turnover, the FIRS wrote to commercial banks asking for details of the turnover of some of the affected companies. The first letter to commercial banks from the FIRS was written in May last year. The letter requested a list of companies, partnerships and enterprises with a banking turnover of N10 billion and above.
The move was aimed at ascertaining those companies that are compliant with the tax laws and those that are not compliant.
The second letter was written to all commercial banks in October 2018, and the responses from the banks are currently being reviewed by the FIRS.
Meanwhile, in order to ensure tax compliance becomes effective among Nigerian populace, the FIRS revealed its plans to collaborate with the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) and other stakeholders.
Tunde Fowler, FIRS Executive Chairman, said the Service is going after no fewer than 85,000 millionaires in 2019 over tax default.
According to Fowler, FIRS had already realised the sum of N23 billion based on a closer look at the books of 45,000 tax debtors. He said each of the 45,000 tax debtors had over N100 million as turnover in their accounts.