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FIRS to EFCC: Facilitate closure of tax cases under investigations to ensure revenue collection

FIRS to EFCC: Facilitate closure of tax cases under investigations to ensure revenue collection
November 30
10:28 2023

Zacch Adedeji, chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), has called for a synergy between the tax agency and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to effectively monitor and report financial transactions of companies, multinationals, and wealthy individuals.

Adedeji made the call on Wednesday, when he visited Ola Olukoyede, chairman of the anti-graft agency, in his Abuja office.

The FIRS chairman requested the closure of tax investigations to facilitate revenue generation, according to a statement by Dare Adekanmbi, special adviser on media to Adedeji.

He said the collaboration was necessary as socio-economic activities “are speedily transcending from bricks-and-mortar to a digital and knowledge-driven economy”.

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Adedeji said FIRS tracks financial transactions using third-party data, information, and intelligence from sister agencies such as the EFCC.

Seeking EFCC’s support for data sharing to improve intelligence gathering and investigation, he stressed the importance of the two agencies constantly engaging and coordinating regular meetings to address specific challenges.

The taxman also acknowledged the roles of FIRS and EFCC in ensuring fiscal stability and combating financial crimes in Nigeria, stating that the existing working relationship between the two agencies has helped in improving tax compliance levels in the country.

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‘EFCC, FIRS SHOULD EXPLORE JOINT INITIATIVES’

“We should also explore the possibility of joint initiatives, public awareness campaigns, and stakeholder engagement with businesses and the general public in promoting tax compliance and deterring economic crimes,” Adedeji said.

“We could also benefit from joint training and capacity-building programmes to enhance the skills of both FIRS and EFCC personnel in detecting and addressing financial crimes related to tax evasion.

“I am also aware of pending tax investigation cases involving the EFCC. I humbly request the chairman to help us facilitate the transfer and closure of these cases and to enable us to collect the much-needed revenue.” 

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Congratulating Olukoyede, Adedeji noted that the EFCC and FIRS are crucial in supporting the nation’s socio-economic reforms under the renewed hope agenda of President Bola Tinubu.

He said the FIRS raises revenue for government operations, while the EFCC ensures judicious utilisation of these funds in line with the social contract with the people.

In response, Olukoyede thanked the FIRS chairman, assuring him that the existing relationship between the two agencies would be sustained.

He, however, requested that the memorandum of understanding between the two agencies regarding operations in units such as the tax fraud section and joint tax force be reviewed.

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The EFCC boss also requested that some staff of the FIRS be released to work at the anti-graft agency to provide technical support on tax matters.

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