……says Osun has justified tax payer’s money through massive infrastructure development.
The Chairman, Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Mr Babatunde Fowler on Monday disclosed that the Governor Rauf Aregbesola’s administration in Osun has raised the state’s Internal Revenue Service by 30 percent between 2016 and 2017.
He commended Aregbeola’s government for being resilient, dogged and focused at raising the bar of good governance in all ramifications in spite of the present economic realities.
The FIRS’ Chairman made the disclosure during a courtesy call on the Governor as part of activities lined up for the 140th Quarterly Meeting of the Joint Tax Board, being hosted by the Osun Board of Internal Revenue Service in Osogbo.
Fowler held that the present administration in Osun has judiciously justified the tax payer’ money through infrastructural development in all sectors of the economy.
He noted that the state under Governor Aregbesola’s watch has demonstrated high sense of commitment to human and capital development, a stride which according to him was made possible through innovative ideology to robust taxation.
Fowler who doubles as the Chairman of Joint Tax Board, said it is on record that Osun has made giant strides to stimulate her economy with determined efforts to an improved revenue generation.
He called on other states of the federation to key into the Osun revenue generation policy, which he said has witnessed a geometric improvement in the last few years.
According to him “What Aregbesola has done in increasing tax revenue in Osun is amazing, while the Federal Inland Revenue Service is advocating for at least 25% increment from states, it is worthy of note that Aregbesola has increased the tax revenue of Osun by 35% between 2016-2017.
“I am not too surprised because Governor Aregbesola is not new to taxation as he played a prominent role in the growing of Internal Generated Revenue in Lagos state.
“There is no doubt in the fact that our visit to Osun will give us an ample opportunity to understudy the administrative ingenuity and political prowess employed by the Osun government to achieve the giant strides in her revenue capacity.
“I am happy that the 36 States’ Chairmen of revenue generation who are currently in Osun will have a lot to learn from the Aregbesola’s administration on the nitty-gritty required to actualize self-sustaining revenue for government.
“Another significant observation having gone round Osun is that one can easily see that tax player’s money is working, a lot can be learnt from Osun on what taxation can do for a state.
“Osun was not like this before the advent of this administration and I know that Osun doesn’t get much from the federal allocations, so this spate of infrastructural development can only happen through an improved iGR.
In an address, Osun Governor, Rauf Aregbesola while calling on people to imbibe the spirit of tax payment stressed that no meaningful development can take place without the people assisting the government through tax payment.
He called on governments all over the country to mobilise their people to work and be ready to contribute part of their earnings to support societal growth, saying that public service can only be possible through taxation.
Aregbesola who said the reliance of the nation on oil revenue for survival is no longer safe as the product will no longer be useful in the next 30 years.
The Governor then called for an alternative to generating revenue for the country which he said everyone must take as a duty for all.
He said, “Taxation came into existence from the beginning of human existence as far back as 6,000 B.C when every individual already knew about taxation.
“Many people fail to realise that public service is only possible through tax, if we think what is happening in Nigeria is sustainable then we are deceiving ourselves because our main stay as a nation which is oil will no longer be be useful in the next 30 years.
“The only thing we must do today is to develop alternatives to oil revenue, we must do more to find an alternative.
“There is no other way to run a modern government except through the contribution of those who are working, the greatest displacement of a man is not being able to contribute to the development of his environment.
“As long as you are working you should be ready to support the system, the people should be ready to participate in development by contributing from their revenue.
“For the people to have impact in the environment, we must begin to mobilize our people to work and part with some of their earnings to support government”. The Governor noted.