RMAFC Chief: Less Than 40 Million Nigerians Paying Taxes

Chairman of the Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC), Muhammad Shehu, has revealed that less than 40 million Nigerians are currently contributing to tax revenue.
Muhammad Shehu
Muhammad ShehuGOOGLE

He encouraged citizens to fulfill their tax obligations to bolster government revenue and enhance public service delivery.

In an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria, Shehu encouraged citizens to fulfill their tax obligations, emphasizing the importance of taxation in boosting government revenue and enhancing service delivery. He expressed concern over the low number of taxpayers, stating, "That is too low for a country that has more than 200 million populations."

Shehu also debunked speculations about extravagant emoluments for political office holders in Nigeria, clarifying that their earnings were not as excessive as widely believed by the public.

He disclosed that the RMAFC had developed software aimed at enhancing transparency in revenue generation and distribution among the three tiers of government. He commended the establishment of a Tax Reform Committee by President Bola Tinubu, highlighting its potential to expand the tax base by including economic participants from the informal sector.

Regarding concerns about Nigerians evading taxes, Shehu called for collaboration between the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) and the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) to identify categories of individuals who are not fulfilling their tax obligations.

He stressed the significance of tax payments in funding essential services and infrastructure, emphasizing that public services such as clean environments, good roads, and healthcare are funded by taxes. He urged Nigerians to pay their taxes promptly and consistently, as this would contribute to the nation's development and welfare programs.

Responding to public criticism regarding a reported 114 percent increase in the salaries of political office holders, Shehu clarified that such information was untrue.

He noted that the RMAFC has the constitutional responsibility to determine and review the salaries of executive, legislative, and judicial officers, with the last review taking place in 2007. Shehu assured that the commission would not consider salary increases for political office holders during the current economic challenges facing Nigeria.

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