Nigerian Postal Service says the recently signed Finance Act bill is negatively affecting its finances. According to the Post Master General of the Federation, Adebayo Adewusi, the removal of stamp duty as part of the collectable revenue of NIPOST is depleting their revenue.
Adewusi who said the Finance Act was hindering their revenue generation drive, requested that the Senate Committee on Communications review the Finance Act and return the stamp duty collection to NIPOST. Nairametrics had reported that the right to collect stamp duty was handed to the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS).
This has caused division between the two agencies of the Federal Government, pitting NIPOST against the FIRS. It had also led to NIPOST workers picketing the Federal Ministry of Finance, as they lay the blame on the Minister of Finance, Zainab Ahmed.
The workers frowned at the decision of Ahmed to have the proceeds of the stamp duty warehoused by the FIRS since it’s a tax-related responsibility. In a Nairametrics report, the Secretary-General of the workers’ union, Ayo Olorunfemi, argued that though the stamp duty collection would now be carried out electronically, it does not mean government should change the collector.
[READ MORE: Buhari seeks amendment of new Finance Act)
Olorunfemi had stated that, “The action of the minister is unfortunate, inimical to the ideals preached by this administration and if not checked, is capable of causing inter-agency disunity or unhealthy rivalry even now when all hands must be on deck to uplift the nation.”
Despite the plea of Adewusi, the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Communications, Senator Oluremi Tinubu, told Adewusi to think out of the box in order to mitigate the challenges even though NIPOST said the decision is against the global practice, as NIPOST has the right to produce and sell stamp for both postage and duty purposes.
Why the rancour about stamp duty? If the FIRS takes over the collection of stamp duty, it will likely affect the revenue of NIPOST, as they will not be able to meet their target. Stamp duty collection was expected to contribute significantly to the revenue of NIPOST.
On the other hand, the stamp duty collection will add to the already saturated collectable revenue being administered by FIRS. This will help to further boost the revenue profile of the Nigerian tax administrator.