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Nami Tasks African Countries on Effective Revenue Utilisation




By Tony Obiechina, Abuja

Governments across Africa have been advised to rethink governance, engender public confidence and trust in government by providing value for taxpayers’ money in line with their obligations under the social contract they have with citizens.

Executive Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Muhammad Nami gave the advise at the Opening Ceremony of the African Tax Administration Forum (ATAF) 7th General Assembly, with the theme “Rethinking Revenue Strategies: The Human Face of Taxation,”  held in Lagos.

The Executive Chairman added that it was imperative for African Tax Administrators to mobilise and speak with one voice as a regional bloc on global tax issues for their collective interests.

“The Fiscal social contract which hinges on the willingness of the citizens to pay tax in return for the provision of public service, is a clarion call on the government at all levels in Africa to rethink governance.

“In my view, if we must transform the tax system and enhance revenue collection in Africa, there is a need for the governance at all levels to engender public confidence and trust in government by providing value for taxpayers’ money”, Nami said.

He also stated that governments should reconsider how projects are reported in the public space, with such reports communicating to convey the idea that taxpayers’ money’s is used to fund infrastructural projects. 

The Executive Governor of Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu who was represented by the Executive Chairman of Lagos State Internal Revenue Service (LIRS) Mr. Hamzat Ayodele Subair, said there was the need to give taxation a human face, by implementing projects with taxpayers’ moneys that impact the lives of the citizens.

“There is no development without funding. We have amongst others, embarked on major transformational infrastructure projects cutting across transport, health, education, agriculture, technology amongst others.

“These major infrastructural interventions are designed to improve the quality of life of our citizens and re-engineer economic growth and development trajectory with improved productivity of our citizenry, which invariably improves our tax generating abilities.

“In a bid to save the human face of taxation, communication and feedback from the taxpayer is of paramount importance,” Mr. Subair noted.

Similarly, in his remarks, the Executive Secretary of the African Tax Administration Forum, Mr. Logan Wort noted that a critical component of rethinking Domestic Revenue Mobilization is to ensure that government has an impact on the lives of citizens.

“While we consider strategies or frameworks within which to enhance Domestic Resource Mobilization on the continent, we must always put into perspective its primary objective—being the impact on people’s lives as reflected by ATAF’s mandate in the new decade which is to serve the higher purpose of enabling and assisting African governments to mobilize their own domestic resources through taxation in order to build states that foster economic growth and social development in the interest and wellbeing of all their citizens.

“This mandate especially the latter part is one we all share in various capacities across our jurisdictions, and one that must drive our Domestic Resource Mobilization objectives”, Mr. Wort said.

The 7th ATAF General Assembly, which is being hosted by the FIRS, has in attendance tax administrators from 41 tax authorities in Africa. It is the first physical gathering of the forum since the covid-19 pandemic.


Tinubu Rallies Support to Create Jobs, Fight Hunger, Corruption 




President Bola Tinubu on Tuesday said his administration needs support from Nigerians be able to deliver on job creation and fight against hunger and corruption.

Tinubu stated this in Abuja at the opening of the 2023 National Conference, Exhibition, and Annual General Meeting of the Nigeria Society of Engineers (NSE).

The president who was represented by Vice President Kashim Shettima at the event noted with pride that Nigerian Engineers are committed to excellence and are respected globally.

The theme of this year’s conference is “Re-engineering the manufacturing sector for competitiveness and enhanced economic growth”.

He said the Renewed Hope Agenda of his administration was defined by commitment to unleashing the country’s full economic potential.

He said that the agenda focused on job creation, access to capital for small and large businesses, inclusiveness, the rule of law, and the fight against hunger, poverty and corruption.

“Let me also say that I eagerly await the communique and resolutions from this conference which I expect to receive within the next one week.

“Over the next four days that you will be here, I encourage you to engage in firm deliberations and emerge with a comprehensive roadmap.

“Outlining how, as a nation, we can leverage manufacturing, technology and innovation as driving forces behind achieving the Eight Renewed Hope Agenda of this administration.”

The president enjoined NSE to provide his administration with a tangible and practical metric for the evaluation of success.

“You are aware of the premium that our administration is placing on monitoring and evaluation which was demonstrated at the inaugural cabinet retreat a few weeks ago.

“What we cannot measure, we cannot manage, the popular saying goes; so let us endeavour to focus also on measurements as private sector leaders and stakeholders.

“Let us measure our achievements not only by the profits we generate for owners and shared holders but also by the number of Nigerians lifted out of poverty.

“The number of jobs created and impact our actions have on the fight against corruption.

“Since assuming office as the President and Commander in-Chief of the Armed Forces of our great country Nigeria, this is my first request and challenge to the Nigerian Society of Engineers.

“Judging by the caliber of people seated here today, I am confident that you will rise to the occasion and not disappoint.

“I look forward to future engagements while we review our collective successes and rededicate ourselves to the all-important tasks of building a Nigeria that works for all,” President Tinubu said.

Tinubu tasked the NSE to work closely with government and other stakeholders to jointly chart a path to true and lasting prosperity for Nigeria”.

”Our administration requires your support to harness the immense opportunities in front of us, and to turn the promise of Renewed Hope into reality for the generality of our people.

“I once again offer you my solemn promise that I am committed to providing the enabling environment for every policy, legislation and action required for this to happen.”

In attendance were the Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Benjamin Kalu; Gov. Abdullahi Sule of Nasarawa; Deputy Governor of Borno State, Umar Usman and Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Abubakar Momoh.

Others are the Elder statesman, Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu; former gov. James Ibori; President of NSE, Tasiu Wudil and President of the World Federation of Engineers, Mustapha Shehu, among others.Highpoint of the ocassion saw, the representative of the president and a few other dignitaries decorated with various honours of the NSE

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Emefiele  Remains  in Custody as Court Adjourns Till Jan. 18




A Federal Capital Territory High Court has adjourned till Jan. 18, 2024 for the continuation of the trial in the alleged procurement fraud case against former Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) governor, Godwin Emefiele.

Emefiele was accused of awarding a contract for the procurement of 43 vehicles worth N1.

2 billion between 2018 and 2020 to a staff of CBN by name Sa’adatu Yaro.

Justice Hamza Muazu granted him bail in the sum of N300 million but he is still in the Kuje Correctional Centre due to inability to meet his bail conditions.

The former CBN governor must produce two sureties in like sum.

The sureties must have Certificates of Occupancy and titles of properties in Maitama District, Abuja.

Despite attempts by his lawyers, Emefiele has not been released.

Those sympathetic with him contend that the bail money is huge and could be an attempt to weaken his financial standing.

His lawyers are expected beat down the amount and get him out as his prolonged stay in detention portrays the country in bad light.

Those against him however maintain that the charges are severe enough for him to suffer what he is passing through.

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Tinubu Writes Senate,Seeks Approval  for $8.6bn, €100m Loan 




President Bola Tinubu has written the Senate seeking approval for $8,699,168,559 and €100 million loan in the 2022 – 2024 borrowing plan.

The letter which was read by the Senate President, GodsWill Akpabio, at plenary on Tuesday stated that the money would be used to fund projects across all sectors, with specific emphasis on infrastructure, agriculture, health, water supply, roads, security, and employment generation as well as financial management reforms.

Muhammadu Buhari-led administration approved the borrowing plan at its Federal Executive Council meeting held on May 15, 2023.

The letter reads: “I write in respect of the above subject and to submit the attached federal government 2022-2024 external borrowing plan for consideration and early approval of the national assembly to ensure prompt implementation of the projects.

“The senate may wish to note that the past administration approved a 2022-2024 borrowing plan by the Federal Executive Council (FEC) held on May 15, 2023.

“The project cuts across all sectors, with specific emphasis on infrastructure, agriculture, health, water supply, roads, security, and employment generation as well as financial management reforms.

“Consequently, the required approval is for $8,699,168,559 and €100 million.

“I would like to underscore the fact that the projects and programmes in the borrowing plan were selected based on economic evaluations as well as the expected contribution to the social economic development of the country, including employment generation, and skills acquisition.“Given the nature of these facilities, and the need to return the country to normalcy it has become necessary for the senate to consider and approve the 2022- 2024 external abridged borrowing plan to enable the government deliver its responsibility to Nigerians.”

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