The Acting Chairman, Joint Tax Board (JTB), Alhaji Kabir Mashi, Thursday said the federal government had taken useful steps aimed at resolving the menace of multiple taxation in the country.
Multiple taxation had been identified particularly by the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) as one of the major constraints to investment.
But the JTB acting chairman said following a presentation on multiple taxation by MAN to the Federal Executive Council (NEC), a committee headed by Gombe State Governor, Alhaji Ibrahim Dankwambo, and six other state governors including the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Chairman FIRS/JTB among others, had been set up to review the manufacturers submission.
Speaking in Abuja at the 127th meeting of the JTB tagged: “Tackling Multiple Taxation in Nigerian Tax System: Roles and Responsibilities of Relevant Authorities,” he said though remarkable efforts were being made by various state authorities to curb multiple taxation, the JTB, nevertheless had been saddled with the responsibilities to find a solution to the problem at the three tiers of government.
Further determined to resolve the problems of multiple taxation, Mashi noted the federal government had directed federal ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) to henceforth, seek formal approval of President Goodluck Jonathan before they can introduce any form of tax.
He added that though detailed recommendations had been made in the report which had been submitted to it, nevertheless, a lot of work still needed to be done by the JTB before a framework could be finalised.
His comments came just as the Special Adviser to the Lagos State Governor on Taxation and Revenue, Mr. Bola Shodipo, carpeted the Federal Government for claiming the largest share of the statutory allocations while it had minimal responsibilities it shoulder in comparison to that of the states and local governments.
While faulting the present revenue allocation formula, Shodipo said the federal government ought to take up additional responsibilities to justify the 52 per cent share it gets from monthly allocations.
Earlier in his presentation on “Nigerian Tax Environment and the Menace of Multiplicity of Taxes and Levies: Lagos State Experience,” Shodipo blamed the menace on indiscipline on the part of tax authorities, lack of supervision on the collecting system as well as un-coordinated tax laws.
He said multiple taxation had the potential of causing resentment towards tax regimes as well as leading to underdevelopment as businesses collapse under heavy overheads, while tax evasion becomes the order of the day, among other issues.
He added that if not properly addressed, multiple taxation could create chaos, stagnation and recession in the economy.