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Sir Monday Onyeme, third from right in a group photograph at the recently held JTB meeting in Abuja

ABUJA/Nigeria: The Joint Tax Board, an umbrella body of all tax authorities in Nigeria, has called for multi-agency collaboration by critical stakeholders in tax administration, regulatory and security agencies to curb the alarming trend of tax evasion in the country.

The theme of the meeting was “Effective Tax Compliance for political office holders: A panacea for national development”.

In a communique released at the end of its 150th meeting in Abuja, and signed by the Acting Chairman of the JTB and Chairman, Delta State Internal Revenue Service, Sir Monday Onyeme, the JTB adopted a number of resolutions which it said were far-reaching measures aimed at curbing incidences of tax evasion in Nigeria.

The resolutions emphasized that it was a statutory and moral duty of every eligible citizen to pay their taxes, and that “tax compliance should be a prerequisite for holding public office.

It resolved that intending and serving political office holders should be fully tax compliant before being entrusted with superintending over public funds.

The communique further advocated collaboration between tax authorities across the country and other stakeholders such as the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, the Code of Conduct Bureau, CCB, the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit, NFIU, and the National Identity Management Commission, NIMC, for enhanced tax compliance among the political class.

The JTB called for the amendment of the current electoral laws to make tax compliance mandatory for those seeking public office, and reinforce the drive for application of tax intelligence such as the Data for Tax Initiative (DTI) in the administration of tax nationwide

It also called on the executive and legislature at the national and state levels to show appropriate political will by paying their taxes, as well as, supporting tax authorities to ensure full compliance.

The JTB, also in the communique, mandated state internal revenue services to engage their respective local government councils to optimize revenue derivable from the administration of previously administered radio and television license fees.

It commended the unanimous approval given by States and the Federal Capital Territory Internal Revenue Services for the implementation of the Single Interstate Road Tax stickers, SIRTS, and Single Haulage Fee, SHF, both initiatives of the JTB.

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