By Omos Oyinbode, Asaba
There are indications that with the current drive in taxation and the compliance level of Deltans, 100 percent of Delta’s recurrent expenditure and greater chunk of capital expenditure would be based on its Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) within the next two years.
The Executive Chairman of Delta State Board of Internal Revenue (DBIR), Joel Onowakpo-Thomas, who made the declaration at the official inauguration of Asaba District Society of the Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (CITN) is unwavering that with effective tax system in place, the state has nothing to worry about with the dwindling international oil prices.
Although he admitted that evasion of tax could be a challenge in realising the vision, the DBIR boss explained that the state government has put in place a number of measures to check leakages in the system.
His words, “we are putting up structures to tackle tax evasion in Delta State and we will do that through ICT. ICT is an enabler to block leakages in tax system and that is what we are doing right now. “At present, Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) covers about 52 per cent of our recurrent expenditure in the state. By 2017, IGR will cover 100 per cent of our recurrent expenditure and greater portion of capital expenditure”, Onowakpo enthused.
Earlier in a lecture titled: ‘Causes and Effect of Tax Evasion to National Economy’, governments at all levels have been asked to engender good tax culture among its citizenry by ensuring good governance, promote fairness, equity and balance in the provision of basic amenities.
The lecturer and Director of Enforcement and Compliance, Delta State Board of Internal Revenue, Mr. Paul Itawansa also canvassed the need for strong tax auditing as well as heavy penalties for tax defaulters.
He also stressed the need for regular orientation and re-orientation of Nigerian youths on the essence of tax payment by organising regular educational and competition programmes in schools on the ills of tax evasion.
High point of the event was the inauguration of executives of Asaba District Society of the CITN with Mr. Patrick Aladino as Chairman.