Lack of Data Setback for Nigeria’s Tax System CITN Laments

Omolabake Fasogbon 

The Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (CITN) has identified a huge gap in  data, accountability and governance as a major setback for the tax administration and system in Nigeria.

The President of CITN, Mr. Adesina Adedayo revealed this challenge at a news conference in Lagos on the institute’s 24th International Tax Conference scheduled to hold in Abuja between May 17 and 20.

Speaking on the challenges facing the country’s tax system,  CITN’s helmsman said a huge gap in data, accountability and governance constituted a major setback for the country.

He stressed the need for proper identification of taxpayers to enhance accountability and to plug revenue leakages.

He said,  “In a system like Nigeria where we have over 200 million people, these 200 million persons should not be anonymous. 

“It is important that these people, including their bases and families, are known as they are the ones that constitute the taxpayers. This is why we are having the data for the tax initiative being championed by the Joint Tax Board.

“Data is very important. It is not possible that we tax people that we do not know,” CITN’s president said at the news conference in Lagos.

On the 24th International Tax Conference in Abuja, Adebayo disclosed that the edition would address gaps affecting tax developments, saying it would focus on “Global Disruption, Taxation and Digitalisation: Implications for Socio-Economics Development.”

He said that the conference, which will take place between May 17 and 20, would focus lso on how the economy can benefit from innovation spreading across governance, administration and interaction, via taxing.

Adedayo  said: “The benefit of the conference is to let Nigerians know that with the way economic and business models have changed, tax administration and practice must also change. 

“Unlike before when we wait for people to have a physical office before we tax them, virtual offices are now becoming more economically viable than people think.

  “With the global disruption, it is clear that we do not need physical interaction anymore to make money, which has caused us to have a discussion about it and how we do business around it. 

“On how tax comes into all these, it comes from administration to practice. These will form our fulcrum for this year’s conference.”

Adedayo expressed that the outcome of  previous editions of the  conference “has been instrumental in the development of the Finance Act which started in 2019 as well as the Tax Legislative Framework.”

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