Tax defaulting firms and individuals in the country have been warned by the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) that the game is up as it has now vowed to bring the perpetrators before the extant laws establishing it.
Security Adviser of FIRS, Col. Ola Majoyeogbe (rtd), stated this while unsealing Peugeot Automobile of Nigeria (PAN) in Kaduna on the orders of the Executive Chairman, FIRS, Mrs. Ifueko Omoigui-Okauru.
The premises of PAN was sealed over unpaid taxes estimated at about N1.3 billion. However, before the closure, the management of the firm disputed FIRS figure and requested to pay part of the outstanding money which the FIRS team rejected.
But at the unsealing of the company, Majoyeogbe said the extant law establishing the agency, the Federal Inland Revenue Service (Establishment) ACT, 2007, makes the FIRS, the primary agency for the administration of taxes in Nigeria, Part 1, Section 2 of the Act, hence the order to seal the firm in the first instance.
He said FIRS had exhausted all the processes available to it to make PAN pay up to no avail. He however noted that with the ongoing aggressive tax drive of the agency, it would fight every manifestation of corrupt practices in the areas of tax fraud and tax evasion all over Nigeria.
“In this respect, we are doing battle in conjunction with other Departments in FIRS. Several persons had been arrested, investigated and charged to court. In June, the Federal High Court sitting in Lafia, Nasarawa State, convicted one fellow for forgery of tax documents. He was convicted on five charges and sentenced accordingly. Several other persons had been charged to various courts in Abuja. Very shortly, they would be arraigned. There are persons who are free citizens today who have not even been arrested but who are likely to spend Christmas in prison.”