From Uche Usim, Abuja
The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) said it would ensure about 35,000 Non Governmental Organisations (NGOs) not captured in the nation’s tax net were brought into the fold.
In a radio programme monitored in Abuja, the agency said its finding showed that of the 38,000 NGOs registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), over 35,000 have no tax records with FIRS.
The Agency explained that while establishments like religious bodies and missionary schools were captured as NGOs, findings showed that most of them were making profit from generated revenues.
“For instance, some NGOs run schools. People pay fees. They employ workers, who ought to pay taxes captured as PAYE. Again, the establishment itself ought to pay tax on profit made. That’s how it should be.
“So, we’ve begun issuing letters to them. We have their records from CAC and with that they’ll be expected to do proper documentation.
“What will be required of them are: Certificate of registration, details of trustees’ members, article of association and personal income tax clearance of trustees’ members, among others,” an FIRS official said at the programme.
The Executive Chairman of FIRS, Tunde Fowler, has repeatedly said the agency would extend its tax net to capture as many people as possible.
AGRIC : Illegal fishing coys to face sanction -FG
From Magnus Eze, Abuja
The Federal Government said it would renew clampdown on unregistered fishing companies operating in Nigerian waters, as part of strategies to boost the fish sector in the agricultural value chain programme, achieve economic diversification and increase homegrown food production, self-sufficiency and food security.
Minister of State for Agriculture and Rural Development, Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, who stated this while playing host to the Secretary General, Fisheries Committee for the West and Central Gulf of Guinea, Seraphim Dedi in Abuja, disclosed that government had reduced drastically the operations of illegal fishing companies, adding that this has greatly enhanced the quality and quantity of fish production and security.
He noted that it had also created employment for the youths as well as increased wealth generation and improved standard of living of citizens.
The country spends about N125.38 billion every year on the importation of 1.9 million metric tons on fish, to meet up the annual demand of over three million metric tons.
The minister confirmed that Nigeria would host the 10th Conference of Ministers of the Fisheries Committee for the West Central Gulf of Guinea (FCWC) in Abuja this year.
Earlier, Secretary General of FCWC, Seraphim Dedi said his visit was to introduce the committee and emphasised Nigeria’s strategic place in galvanising the committee’s role in achieving its mandate.
FCWC is a regional technical fishery body constituted by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) to harness a common interest in the region.
FG committed to tackling humanitarian challenges in North East – Udoma
From Basil Obasi, Abuja
The Federal Government has restated its commitment to tackling the humanitarian challenges in the North-east of the country and will strongly support any initiative by the international community in that direction. The Minister of Budget and National Planning, Senator Udoma Udo Udoma disclosed this in Abuja, yesterday, when the Ambassadors of Norway and Germany, Mr. Jens-Petter Kjemprud and Barnthard Schlagheck, respectively, briefed him on the forthcoming International Donor Conference, scheduled for February 24 in Oslo, the capital of Norway.
A statement released by the Media Adviser to the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Mr. James Akpandem, explained that the conference was to draw attention of the international community to the fallouts of the Boko Haram insurgency in the Lake Chad region, as well as to gain more international support for the resultant humanitarian challenges in order to secure greater political commitment from governments of the region to improve the situation.
Speaking on the occasion, the Minister of State for Budget and National Planning, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, noted that the Nigerian government had demonstrated serious commitment to tackling the challenges of the region, including putting in place a Presidential Committee to monitor effective implementation of initiatives. She indicated that, as is well known, the Nigerian military had recorded tremendous successes in tackling the insurgency, but the disruptions in economic activity caused by the insurgents had thrown up humanitarian challenges.
In his reaction, the Norwegian Ambassador, Mr. Kjemprud pledged the support of Norway towards addressing insurgency adding that considering the enormity of the present challenges, it has become necessary for countries of the region to effectively engage the international community to prevent it from deteriorating.