More Hard Times for States in 2017, Says Kwara Revenue Boss


Hammed Shittu in Ilorin
The  Chairman, of the Kwara State Internal Revenue Service (KWIRS), Dr. Murtala Awodun, yesterday  hinted that the 36 states of the federation might witness more hard times in view of the unabated bombings of oil installations by the Niger Delta militants in the country.

He said such the ugly development might disrupt the global crude oil market.
Speaking in Ilorin, the Kwara State capital, during the 16th edition of the “Media Parliament”  programme organised by the state council of Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Awodun also said: “Such a situation would make it more difficult for many states that depend heavily on funds from the federal account to recover from recession.”

Awodun spoke on ‘Sustainability of Public Revenue and Challenges of Economic Recovery.’
Represented by the Director Administration and Corporate Affairs of the agency, Mr. Lekan Rotimi, Awodun said: ”States must buckle up in their revenue generation drive and depend less in funds from Abuja which was no longer forthcoming.

‘‘The first quarter of 2017 is really going to be tough for many states with all these bombings going and oil projection on the decline, there is no projection that there will be a slight increase in the prices of oil.”

The revenue agency boss however said Kwara State would survive the recession because of the measures already put in place in its revenue generation drive and collection process.

He said the current recession ‘‘is a good opportunity for Kwara because its economic policy and revenue drives are not based on resources but on on knowledge.’

Awodun added that the ability of the state government to pay workers salaries regularly would also bring about a quick recovery for the state, urging the government to sustain it.

In his goodwill message, Chairman Transition Implementation Committee (TIC), Ilorin West Local Government Area, Alhaji Abdulhamid Ali, said the local government was working towards increasing  its revenue drive from N132 million to N500 million in 2017.