The Lagos Inland Revenue Service has advised Lagosians to adhere to prompt payment of their taxes, explaining that tax evasion hinders development in the state.
According to the Chairman, LIRS, Mr. Ayodele Subair many “billionaires” in the city have not “imbibed the spirit of paying their taxes”.
He said, “I can readily tell you that taxpayers in paid employment paid much better than those that are self-employed. We have the billionaires and high net worth individuals, many of them have not imbibed the true spirit of paying theirq taxes. However, we will continue to advocate and let them know that they need to have a change of heart, while we are also strategising and deploying ways of catching them.”
The Revenue Service boss noted that taxpayers’ money has been evidently been used for only the development of the mega city.
He said: People have different reasons for wanting to avoid the payment of taxes. In the past, there were all sorts of explanations, like people not seeing where the money was going, but that is not the case for Lagos because it is very evident where tax money goes.
“That is why you see ‘taxpayer money in action’ at some project sites. But, in some other states, we can categorise the reluctance to pay under trust deficit between the people and government and a lot of people use that as an excuse not to pay. If we want development, we have to imbibe the culture of paying taxes.”
Subair further commented on the issue of multiple taxation, explaining that their improved database management systems had, for long, rectified the issue in the state.
“Multiple taxes relate to collecting the same type of tax twice, however people mix the whole thing up and some people refer to levies and administrative charges as tax.
Multiple taxation is like when you have paid your PAYE accurately for the year and we come up with another demand notice over the same income. That is wrong. In the past, we had people who had six taxpayer identities because things were not done using biometrics.
So, people moved from one tax office to another to get the least amount possible because we didn’t have a central database. Part of the problem is ignorance. People should show more interest in knowing about taxation so that people do not levy them unnecessarily.”Follow us on social media