The Enugu State Government has expressed optimism that the N24 billion Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) target for fiscal year 2017 will be achieved.
Mrs Adaonah Kene-Uyanwune, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Revenue and Financial Matters, said this in an interview in Enugu.
Kene-Uyanwune said that the government was happy that its revenue generation had been progressive, attributing the development to the administrative ingenuity of the state governor.
She said that within the first half of the year, the state’s IGR stood at over N11 billion, compared to N7.2 billion for the same period in 2016.
“A few months back, the State Executive Council approved the automation of the state revenue board.”
“This provided for an in-built data synchronizing with payment into the Treasury Single Account (TSA) and ensuring that all government revenues are harnessed and integrated from ministry to ministry into one account.”
“It is a laudable achievement of the government. We are almost at the end of the first half of the year and have done over N11 billion.”
“Given what we have now, we are very positive that we will end the year between N22 billion and N24 billion,” she said.
Kene-Uyanwune applauded the state governor, whom she said, had not left anything undone to ensure that the state Board of Internal Revenue (BIR) met its target.
“The governor has not left anything undone to ensure that these revenues are met.
“There are back duty investigations that have yielded a lot of fruits in terms of revenue growth this year.
“The tax to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) rate in Nigeria is about six per cent.
“It means that Nigerians are not tax compliant but in Enugu, the governor knows what it means to get the people comply.”
The special adviser said that the governor had kept to his four-point agenda with infrastructural development paramount, adding that when the people are happy with your work, they pay taxes.
“The infrastructural development in the state is attributable to the sum total of the individual capacities of residents of the state who are tax compliant.”
Kene-Uyanwune said that the state assembly had also given procedural support in ensuring that all amendments to the revenue laws were approved to back the board.
She said that the state government understood that proper framework must be put in place to achieve optimum collection of government taxes and levies.
“We are not purely dependent on Federal Allocations anymore as IGR is contributing well over 50 per cent of the state revenue.”
Kene-Uyanwune said that the state government had put in place measures to bring tax men closer to the people, adding that efforts were also ongoing to introduce end-user taxation and increasing the tax base.
She, however, said that the tax regime was not without its challenges as some prospective taxpayers were recalcitrant.