FIRS warns ministries, departments and agencies against contracting tax collection, enforcement to consultants

The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) has warned ministries, departments, and agencies of government (MDAs) not to hire consultants or concessionaires to collect taxes owed to the federal government or any of its agencies.

This was disclosed in a statement issued by the executive chairman of FIRS, Muhammad Nami, based on a NAN report.

Nami expressed worry that some MDAs engage in assessment, collection, accounting and enforcement of taxes and levies in their agreements with concessionaires and consultants.

What FIRS is saying

The release stated, “It has come to the notice of the FIRS that some MDAs are appointing concessionaires or consultants for the assessment, collection, accounting or enforcement of taxes and levies due to the federal government or any of its agencies.

“Some MDAs include such functions in their agreements with concessionaires or consultants.” 

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Nami said Section 68(2) of the Act establishing FIRS highlighted that “the primary agency responsible for administration, assessment, collection, accounting and enforcement of taxes and levies due to the federal government or any of its agencies is the FIRS.

“This is except as may be authorised by the minister responsible for finance by regulation as approved by the National Assembly.” 

According to him, while Section 12(4) of the FIRS Act provides that the service may engage consultants, accountants or other agents to carry out certain functions on its behalf, the law has expressly prohibited the carrying out of assessing and collecting tax by consultants.

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What you should know

  • Nairametrics reported that the FIRS plans to begin enforcing and recovering unpaid tax deductions owed by some Nigerian states and local governments.
  • The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) also has stated that it will commence the process of enforcement and recovery of unremitted tax deductions owed by some states and local governments in Nigeria.
  • Due to the failure of defaulting states and local governments to remit, the FIRS has advised the federal government and the minister of finance to decline approval of any request for the issuance of state bonds or other securities in the capital market, as well as requests for external borrowing and approval of domestic loans from commercial banks or other financial institutions by any of the state and local governments.
  • The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) also has announced that it will begin a compliance exercise on Value Added Tax (VAT) and Withholding Tax in July 2022.