By Seriki Adinoyi
Despite the ravaging effects of COVID-19 on the global economy, Plateau State Internal Revenue Service (PSIRS) said it surpassed its target for the first, second and third quarter by N500 million.
Addressing journalists in Jos on Tuesday, the chairman of PSIRS, Mr. Arlat Dashe who disclosed this while presenting the second and third quarters reports of the Service, added that the feat was achieved following aggressive tax audit and investigations of individuals and organisations within and outside state, where it recorded a remarkable recovery of over N3.8 Billion from MDAs alone.
He also identified sustained engagement with Plateau business community, trade unions and associations, which according to him played special role in ensuring a harmonious tax administration in the state. “To this end, the Service through the Department of Informal Sector has continued to interface with all stakeholders in the unions to ensure that there is synergy between the tax authority and tax payers.”
Dashe also said increased enforcement in the formal and informal sector in 2020, aggressive monitoring and evaluation in the year, and aggressive tax audit and investigation were other strategies implored by the Service.
He, however, said the Service applied some tax relief measures to mitigate the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic.
These measures, Dashe said included, “extension of timelines for filing of annual returns; waiver of penalties and interests charged due to late returns and reduction of interest for late payments.”
Others relief measures, he said were: granting one per cent bonus to all tax payers who file returns early; suspension of enforcement of outstanding tax liabilities; and reduction of taxes payable by informal sector businesses by 50 per cent.
He lamented that, “The pandemic has unfortunately taken a heavy toll on human lives and businesses in the state. This has consequently slowed down the efforts of the Services towards achieving targets within the period under review.
“As a sensitive and responsive government, the Services recognised the suffering of businesses across the state, and that’s why it quickly introduced palliative tax relief measures to help mitigate the adverse effects of covid-19 on Plateau businesses.”