Nigeria’s data base of taxpayers has expanded from 20 million to 35 million, statistics in the Joint Tax Board (JTB) has revealed.
The executive secretary of the Board, Mr Oseni Elamah, who disclosed this yesterday in Abuja explained that the feat was achieved as a result of the ongoing database consolidation of JTB, an initiative being executed in collaboration with the Nigeria Inter Bank Settlement System (NIBSS).
Speaking in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), he noted that the figure of the taxpayers comprised both individuals and corporate bodies.
He said this shows that there is massive expansion of database, even as he pointed out that one could imagine when that translates to actual taxes that are collected in Naira and Kobo.
“At the moment, we are trying to break them into classes of taxpayers and various jurisdictions where they reside state by state. Hopefully, by first week of January 2019, this information will be communicated to all the states and then we will ask them to file their reports for tax assessment and it is then, we will tell Nigerians, how many are teachers, artisans, entertainers among others”, Elamah stated.
He further disclosed that on the average, about 22 per cent growth in tax revenue had been recorded in both state revenue services and Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), when compared to 2017.
Elamah added that the said figure was collated as at third quarter and by the end of last quarter, it would move to 30 per cent, just as observed that by end of the year, 2018 will be one of the best results ever posted by FIRS and most of the states.
He stated that with the advent of the Tax Identification Number (TIN), and Bank Verification Number (BVN), the tax authorities are currently tackling incomes of taxpayers and ensuring they paid their taxes as at when due.
He assured that the board would create more awareness in increase in voluntary compliance and also enhance the capacity of workers to be tax professionals.
Elamah also commended the executive chairman of FIRS and the JTB chairman, Mr Babatunde Fowler, for his support in achieving the feat within a short period of time.
The chairman of the JTB and executive chairman of FIRS, Fowler, had during the 142nd meeting of the JTB in Bauchi, Bauchi State, in November said taxpayer population in the country is set to hit 33 million.
According to Fowler, the ongoing database consolidation of the JTB, an initiative being executed in collaboration with the Nigeria Interbank Settlement System (NIBSS), has shown that the population paying tax in the country is now well over 33 million. He said having this consolidated database, which is clean and credible, opens the door to immense opportunities for the tax administrator at all levels.
“As we build on this data, we shall also be ensuring that the technological infrastructure that will facilitate the seamless exchange of data across levels of competent authorities are present. This entails significant investment in Information Technology via the provision of required infrastructure, equipment and as capacity building for personnel that will drive the processes”, he noted.