FIRS boss tasks tax officials on MDGs, Vision 2020 goals

Encouraged by the support of government toward its activities and the remarkable tax revenues raked into government’s coffers in past years, the Executive Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Mrs. Ifueko Omoigui-Okauru, has charged all employees of the Service to put more of their efforts to work in the fiscal year in order to improve tax administration and service delivery in the country.

Describing the work of tax administrators as crucial to national development drives, Omogui-Okauru explained that improved commitment of the workforce to the corporate goals of the revenue agency would by implication rob on positively on the current drive of the government in achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the Vision 20-2020 goals.

The tax expert who gave the admonition to the management staff of the Service in Abuja recently argued that the collective desire for Nigeria’s sustainable development would remain a mirage if the tax system remains inefficient and urged the tax officials to focus on the big picture of seeing taxation as a veritable fiscal instrument for national development by dedicating themselves to the task of nation building set before them by the government.

Her words: “Let me state, that while we may not always see it this way, the work that we do as tax officials is very important to our development as a country. The work we do is key to achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the Vision 20-2020 goals of government. There is no developed country in the world today, without a strong and developed tax administration system.

“In this year we must focus on the big picture and dedicate ourselves to the task of nation building which has been put before us. I will not go into the core issues to be discussed during this meeting. It suffices to say that issues such as implementing improved processes and programmes to make our system faster, implementation of self-assessment, voluntary compliance, integration of the informal sector, introduction of presumptive tax regime, automation of tax filing processes, multiple taxation and reduction of overall tax burden on taxpayer and the like will be key issues of 2011. “Other key issues will be further simplification of our tax laws and tax processes to aid easier and complete compliance by taxpayers. Again, given the period in which we are, I believe that we will use this opportunity to highlight the imperative for all persons within the tax system to ensure voluntary compliance with tax laws with an even greater obligation on those of us who have been entrusted with offices and positions within Government to lead by example”, Omoigui-Okauru added.

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