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Zacch Adedeji: Tinubu to send emergency fiscal bill to n’assembly for consideration

Zacch Adedeji: Tinubu to send emergency fiscal bill to n’assembly for consideration
February 29
15:03 2024

Zacch Adedeji, chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), says President Bola Tinubu will send an “emergency fiscal bill” to the national assembly within the next two weeks for consideration.

Adedeji spoke on Wednesday while defending the agency’s budget before the house of representatives committee on finance.

He said the bill is awaiting the approval of the federal executive council (FEC), adding that once this is done, it will be transmitted to the national assembly.

Although the FIRS boss did not disclose the content of the bill, he said it is aimed at providing clarity on the fiscal direction of the president amid the current economic hardship.

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Adedeji said Wale Edun, the finance minister, would engage lawmakers to discuss its content before presentation.

“If not for change, I know one should have come yesterday. It was listed at FEC. Hopefully, we will have the first one that we will label an ‘emergency bill’ that addresses those critical issues,” he said.

Speaking further, Adedeji urged lawmakers to support the harmonisation of the federal government’s revenue collection system.

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He said agencies such as the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) and others should not be involved in revenue collection.

“Nigeria needs a single revenue collection platform, as seen in other jurisdictions like the UK and South Africa,” Adedeji added.

“What we see is that in other climes, you have a single revenue-collecting agency. But here in Nigeria, we have more than 62 agencies collecting one way or the other on behalf of the federal government.

“I don’t want to mention names, but when you mention customs, they are a border and trade facilitator. Revenue is not a core mandate of customs.

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“If you go to the UK or South Africa, you will not see customs in South Africa collecting revenue. You don’t see customs collecting revenue in the UK. 

“That is part of the issues I have with the tax credit. It is not the duty of FIRS to be approving money for the road; it is the duty of the ministry of works.”

Meanwhile, the committee approved the sum of N446.34 billion for the 2024 budget of the agency.

The budget estimate comprises N177.44 billion as personnel cost; N156.45 billion as overhead cost, and N112.45 billion as capital.

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