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The tenure of Babatunde Fowler as the Executive Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) ended last weekend and reports have emerged that he is expected to hand over to the most senior Director.

Fowler became FIRS boss on August 20, 2015, but his tenure officially began on December 9, 2015, when the National Assembly confirmed his appointment.

According to the FIRS Establishment Act, the executive chairman shall be appointed by the President subject to the confirmation of the Senate. The chairman and other members of the board, other than ex-officio members, shall each hold office for a term of four years, renewable only once.

FIRS boss, Babatunde Fowler’s tenure ends, replacement disclosed 
Abiodun Aina

Before his appointment, he was the Chief Executive Officer of the Lagos Inland Revenue Service (LIRS) where he served under the then governor of the state, Babatunde Fashola. The tax administrator spearheaded the Lagos tax reform agenda. He expanded the Lagos tax base, which resulted in an increase in Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) from an average of N3.6 billion per month in January 2006 to an average of over N20.5 billion per month in 2014.

Fowler’s possible replacement: Although no substantive appointment has been made by the President, the FIRS boss is expected to hand over to the Coordinating Director in charge of Domestic Tax Group, Abiodun Aina, today. This is according to a report by Punch.

[READ MORE: Audited Reports: CBN, FIRS, others flout Senate’s 7-day ultimatum)

Aina is taking over because Fowler is meant to hand over to the most senior director in the agency. Aina is an investment manager with over 20 years of post-qualification experience in auditing, taxation and banking. He is a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria; Associate Member, Chartered Institute of Stockbrokers and Associate Member, Chartered Taxation Institute.

He was appointed the Special Advisor to the Executive Chairman, FIRS in August 2015. Along with his advisory role, he was appointed Coordinating Director of the Domestic Tax Group of the FIRS on May 15, 2017. He has 13 years of continuous practice in taxation.

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  1. Good ! now the new boss should please take note:

    SMEs and almost every human being on this planet do not want the stress of extra paper work to live their God given lives, and they also do not want to have to pay unregulated 3rd party fees in order to do their duty of paying taxes.

    that unregulated 3rd party fees hidden and institutionalized in almost every law that has to do with prosperity is the root of corruption in Nigeria. its is the Grand Rent-seeking pyramid scheme created by Lawyers and Accountants.

    The Federal and State government need to agree a fixed % that covers all taxes any organisation (especially SMEs) or individual can pay if they choose to and stop bothering people about taxes so people can focus on more important things in their lives.

    let everyone (business & individual) in Nigeria be able easily set up automatic tax deduction of the said fixed % from deposit into their bank account. this should be something simple they can activate with their bank.

    It should be FIRS responsibility to collect and send people regular tax clearance certificate with information of what they deducted from everyone’s account. Not that everyone chasing FIRS for stupid filings and tax clearance.

    its important that this is an OPTION for people, because it might not work for large entities (like public companies) with more complex financial transactions, those are the ones that should be subject to audits, filings e.t.c

    all of this should be in line with the new finance bill which is amazingly good(from the highlights), cause it identifies that companies with turnover less than 25 million are small and should be exempted from complications of paying taxes, and that is inline with every prosperous nation you can think off.

    Government also needs to pay attention to CAC, they are just as bad even with CAMA2 that is riddled with landmines for SMEs. Nobody is interested in doing stupid paper-work and most people can not afford it especially with unregulated 3rd party fees .

    And you can not tie people’s prosperity down to Rent-seekers. the right to earn a living is a fundamental inalienable right of human beings.

    And these organisations sit as gate-keepers clearly limiting those rights with their impractical requirements that have various levels of catch 22s that makes it almost impossible to start or do business.

    its been observed CAC tries to treat small privately own businesses like publicly held businesses, even CAC staff (mostly lawyers) going as far as saying the President can not tell them what to do during the VAIDS program when they were asked why they fail to align with VAIDS to allow businesses sort their records out. They were only interested in charging fines and creating unnecessary complications.

    Updating your CAC records especially for SMEs, should be as simple as updating your twitter profile!!! They come up with so much BS why they have to make life difficult for everyone, and at the end of the day it means you are the one paying out of your pocket for their BS.


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