Armed robbers attack Ibadan Poly, shoot lecturer

In the early hours of Monday, December 20, suspected armed robbers invaded the Polytechnic of Ibadan. Mr Soladoye Adewole, the institution’s Public Relations Officer, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that the attack took place around 12:30 a.m. at the polytechnic’s North campus. During the raid, the thieves stormed the institution’s staff quarters and […]

Armed robbers attack Ibadan Poly, shoot lecturer

Reactions pour in as photos from a Catholic church in Abuja celebrating mass using African cultural items surface online

Following the recent celebration of mass at the St. Lukes Catholic church in Kubwa, Abuja, using African traditional objects, reactions have poured in. Young guys dressed in white singlets with a wrapping tied around their waists and white chalks used to place dots on some regions of their bodies followed the priests to the altar. […]

Reactions pour in as photos from a Catholic church in Abuja celebrating mass using African cultural items surface online

Quote Of The Day

This particular quote reminds me that I’m not stuck with anything! Life is like a camera focus on what’s important Capture the good times Develop from the negatives And if things don’t workout Take another shot ~Belladonna~

Quote Of The Day

Finance Minister To RMAFC: Your Job Is To Monitor, Not Collect Revenue

The Honourable Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed Shamsuna has restated the constitutional role of the Revenue Mobilisation, Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC), on the monitoring of accruals and disbursements of revenue from the Federation Account, pointing that the powers of the commission as constitutionally stated do not relate to collection of revenue by the Commission.

The Minister explained this during the Public Hearing on the Finance Bill 2021 before the Senate Committees on Finance, Custom, Excise & Tariff, and Trade and Investment, today, while responding to observations and recommendations to the Finance Bill by the RMFAC.

Highlighting provisions of the Constitution, the Minister noted that: “The functions of the Revenue Mobilisation, Allocation and Fiscal Commission is provided under Paragraph 32 (a-e) of Part 1 to the Third Schedule of the 1999 Constitution [of the Federal Republic of Nigeria].

“It is limited to the monitoring of the accruals to and disbursement of revenue from the Federation Account.

“The commission is also empowered to advise the Federal and State Governments on fiscal efficiency.

“There is no constitutional role provided to the RMAFC to collect revenues.

“We are only further empowering the FIRS to do what the law has mandated it to do, its constitutional role.” She stated.

Supporting the position of the Minister, the Executive Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Muhammad Nami stated that while in fact the mandate of the RMAFC was not exclusive, as the Budget Office, the Office of the Attorney General of the Federation, the Auditor General, among others have concurrent mandates to monitor, account for and audit revenues, only the FIRS has a sole mandate to collect and administer tax in Nigeria.

“Section 162(1) of 1999 constitution, suggests that the Federal Government is to maintain the Federal Account but that account is to be funded by four agencies of Government. These are: the Federal Inland Revenue Service, the Nigeria Custom, the Department of Petroleum Resources and the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation.

“What the Federal Executive Council and RMAFC do with the money that four of us collect is not an issue for us because we do not have responsibility to directly monitor the disbursement of what we have collected.

“We are not aware of any provision that mandates the RMAFC to make daily, monthly or annual returns to the Federation Account.

“Section 80 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria also talks about maintaining a consolidated revenue account or fund.

“I want to remind us that RMAFC’s mandate remains monitoring revenue, particularly the operating surplus of Ministries, Departments and Agencies because RMAFC, to the best of our understanding, is not a revenue generating unit.

“The RMAFC Act Cap 17 LFN 2004 empowers them to demand and obtain regular and relevant information from NNPC, Nigeria Customs, FIRS, CBN and Federal Ministry of Finance.

“But that provision has not mandated RMAFC to take-over the roles of any or all of these agencies and the Federal Ministry of Finance. Monitoring is not the same as collecting and administering.

The Chairman of the Commission, Engineer Elias Mbam had raised objections to provisions of the Finance Bill 2021, claiming that the proposed amendments to the FIRS Establishment Act that states that the FIRS shall be the primary agency of the Federal Government responsible for the administration, assessment, collection, accounting and enforcement of taxes and levies due to the Federation and the Federal Government or any of its agencies, stating that this provisions “will infringe on the Commission’s constitutional mandate of monitoring accruals to and disbursement of revenue from the Federation Account as well as revenue payable into the Consolidated Revenue Fund of the Federation.”

He further added that the amendment would “foreclose or prevent RMAFC from monitoring tax revenue from FIRS.”

NIGERIA’S TAX-TO-GDP RATIO ONLY ACCURATE WHEN STATE, LOCAL GOVERNMENT AND ALL GOVERNMENT REVENUE IS INCLUDED – FIRS

The Executive Chairman of the FIRS, Muhammad Nami has highlighted the need to include all revenue generated at the national and sub-national levels in order to properly determine the accurate computation of Nigeria’s tax-to-GDP ratio.

He stated this in his welcome remarks at the “National Symposium On Taxation And Challenges Of External Shocks: Lessons and Policy Options for Nigeria,” on Monday, organised by the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) in collaboration with the Usmanu Danfodiyo University, Sokoto (UDUS) at the Transcorp Hilton Hotel Abuja.

“One of the recurring issues in national discourse has been Nigeria’s low tax-to-GDP ratio.” Nami said.

“In as much as the country needs to continually and conscientiously put measures in place to improve such a concern, there is also the need to comprehensively bring all the national and sub-national revenue sources into consideration to properly and appropriately determine the correct and meaningful tax-to-GDP ratio for the country.

“The current basis for its computation, which mostly focuses on the taxes administered at the federal level and leaving out other sources of revenue being generated by the Federal, States and Local governments and their MDAs, does not truly reflect its correct standing.” He stated.

Continuing, Muhammad Nami noted that in order to give the correct state of government revenue and ensure that all government revenue is included in the fiscal accounts and annual statistics, the FIRS will through the Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning, ensure that all government revenue is included in the accounting for taxes generated, including amounts invested by taxpayers in the country’s road infrastructure as a result of Executive Order 007, tax waivers granted to pioneer companies, import and exercise duties waived through the operations of the Nigeria Customs and all other revenues generated by MDAs on behalf of the Federal, State and Local governments in Nigeria.

He further highlighted that the above measures, when implemented, will align Nigeria with global best practices in reporting public finance and will ensure a more transparent and more accurate picture of the country’s Tax-to-GDP ratio.

Earlier in his remarks, the FIRS Executive Chairman stated the importance of the symposium against the continued challenge posed by the Covid-19 pandemic, where new strands of the virus have been discovered and are posing threats to business and commercial activities worldwide.

“The essence of this symposium cannot be overemphasised given the challenges being experienced globally due to the Covid-19 pandemic. With the mutations and vaccine resistant variants being discovered every now and then in some countries, we are yet to be free as the social and economic variables are still unpredictable. Therefore, the theme of this symposium is very timely and relevant as it considers policy options for addressing current and future challenges.

“It will also review the challenges of the informal sector which constitutes about 70% of businesses in Nigeria and the reform options available to bring them into the tax net.”

The symposium also afforded the FIRS launch its digital contact centre, an initiative to foster better communication with taxpayers.

“Today’s event is significant because we are also using the opportunity to formally launch the FIRS contact centre. The decision to hold both events today is strategically intended to walk the talk. By launching the contact centre at this symposium, we are showing our commitment to not only hold talks on policy options in enhancing tax administration but also putting in place structures to actualize one of our key policy thrusts, which is to build a customer-centric FIRS through effective and efficient taxpayer service.” Nami stated.

The Minister of Finance Budget And National Planning, Mrs. Zainab Shamsuna Ahmed, alongside the Minister of State for Budget And National Planning, Prince Clem Agba, the representative of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Permanent Secretary Political and Economic Affairs, OSGF, Andrew Adejo, The Etsu Nupe, His Royal Highness, Alhaji Yahaya Abubakar Rtd GCFR, as well as the Elekota of Kota-Ekiti, His Royal Majesty Oba Fagbemi Emmanuel Ojo formally launched the FIRS Contact Centre.

Johannes Oluwatobi Wojuola
Special Assistant (Media & Communication) to the Executive Chairman, FIRS
December 6, 2021

Maintain Peace Movement (MPM), Women Wing lands Uyo Senatorial District on sensitization Programme

….As Sen. Eyakenyi urges the women to be good ambassadors of PDP

Maintain Peace Movement women wing led by Sen. Akon Eyakenyi (PhD) landed Uyo Senatorial District yesterday, December 3, 2021 for Sensitization Tour.

Sen. Eyakenyi who is the MPM National Director, Women Affairs urged the women to be a good ambassadors by representing the Party positively at all times, preaching the gospel of the party everywhere in tandem with the superlative works of our dear Governor, Mr. Udom Gabriel Emmanuel in the State.

She further encouraged unity, love and respect among the women. She admonished the women to exhibit good character at all times and respect leadership at all levels.

Dr. Eyakenyi took time to appeal to the women to allow “this PEACE”  to reign in them continually, she said  “I am an advocate of peace, I love PEACE so much “

She called on the MPM women coordinators to work in synergy with the Party, and charged them to be focused and remain resolute in their support for the administration of Governor Udom Gabriel Emmanuel and his succession plan.

Welcoming the Senator and her entourage to Uyo Senatorial District, Mrs. Inemesit Enobong Uwah, (wife of the National Secretary of MPM) said that Uyo Senatorial District Women are ready with open arms and hearts to embrace MPM.

“We are women that can never be intimidated, women who show total loyalty to constituted authorities. We support the Governor because God has used him to bless Akwa Ibom people”, she said.

Also speaking, wife of the Speaker , Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly, thanked the Uyo senatorial district women for coming out en mass and prayed women to remain steadfast and be committed to this work, by mobilizing as much possible for PDP.

Dr. Glory Edet, the Honourable Commissioner of Agriculture,Aks, Emphasized on PDP Party Women leaders joining forces strongly with MPM leadership to achieve the set goals . She thanked them for their steadfastness in always supporting the Governor at all times.

Rt. Hon. Alice Ekpeyong who is in charge of chapter women leadership of MPM in the State, gave an explanation of what MPM is all about, that MPM is a sub group of PDP, the major function is to mobilize massively for PDP, spreading the message of the Party everywhere.

The State Woman Leader of PDP Mrs. Mmeme Akpabio, said that the Women of Akwa Ibom State have more than enough reasons to support MPM and the succession plan of the Governor. She pledged the continuous support of the party Women.

The Event was attended by
Sen. Akon Eyakenyi (PhD) – Nat. Dir. Women Affairs MPM, Mrs Aniekan Bassey, Speaker’s Wife, AKHA, Dr. Glory Edet, Commissioner of Agriculture, Aks, Dr. Charity Ido,Member AKHA, PDP State Woman Leader, Mrs Mmeme Akpabio , Mrs. Bright Archibong Wife of Hon. Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy, RT. Hon. Alice Ekpenyong, Chairman Ibesikpo Asutan LGA ,Mrs Akon Michael, MPM Deputy Directors W.A, Wives of Legislators, Wives of Hon Commissioners,  Wives of Chairmen, Female Vice Chairmen, Female Secretaries,  Female Councillors, Stakeholders ,Chapter and Ward Women leaders of PDP & MPM respectively from Uyo Senatorial District.

MaintainPeaceMovement

ThatSameGod

OnlyGod

MPM WOMEN WING
MEDIA UNIT

Ekid Cultural Festival 2021: Afigh Iwaad Ekid set to showcase Cultural Heritage to the world…

Ekid Cultural Festival 2021: Afigh Iwaad Ekid set to showcase Cultural Heritage to the world (Details)

Afigh Iwaad Ekid, an Apex SocioCultural Organization in Akwa Ibom State is set to celebrate it’s Cultural Heritage, even as it invites the good people of Ekid Nation, Akwa Ibom, Nigeria and the world at large to join it in this year’s epic making edition.

This year’s edition has the Theme: THE RELEVANCE OF SOCIOCULTURAL ORGANIZATION IN AKWAIBOM AND NIGERIA.

Under the joint Chairmanship of Mr. Akan Okon, Hon Commissioner for Economic Development and Ibom Deep Sea Port AKS., and Mkpisong Barr. Akpadiaha Ebitu, Secretary, Ibom Air and State Legal Adviser of the People’s Democratic Party, AKS.

The week long event is slated as follows:-

SUNDAY 12th DEC.2021
Thanksgiving Service at Mount Zion Assembly Church, Ekanem street, off Etebi Idong Iwak, Eket, by 10am.

MONDAY 13th DEC.2021
Visit to Orphanage, Hospital and Prison.

TUESDAY 14th. DEC. 2021
Novelty Football match between Afigh Iwaad Ekid Vs Mboho Mkparawa Ibibio, men and women respectively at QIC Primary School Playground by 2pm.

WEDNESDAY 15th DEC. 2021
Symposium and Workshop at Afigh Iwaad Ekid Secretariat, Ede-Obuk, Eket by 12noon.

THURSDAY 16th DEC. 2021:
Crafts Exhibition, Traditional Cuisines Competition, Awards Presentation, Scholarship and Dinner Party at Royalty Hotels, Eket Oron road, by 4pm.

SATURDAY 18th DEC. 2021
EKID DAY FESTIVAL Grand Finale and Carnival Floats
VENUE: QIC Primary School Playground, Eket Oron road…

…LET US JOIN OUR HANDS TOGETHER AND PROTECT OUR CULTURAL HERITAGE…

You can’t afford to miss this Year’s CULTURAL FESTIVAL… It’s going to be fun fun fun all the ways…

ObongIwaad (Hon.) Etienne Bob
PRESIDENT GENERAL
CHIEF HOST

#EkidCulturalFestival2021
#AfighIwaadEkid

WHERE WILL YOU BE THIS DECEMBER…?

THE OFFICIAL FLAG OFF PARTY FOR EKET CHRISTMAS FESTIVAL.

Excess enjoyment!
Premium merriment!!
Enough entertainment!!!

Come with your loved ones.

Eket Christmas Festival has all it takes for you to have a memorable Christmas experience.

Why Nigeria Did Not Sign The OECD Minimum Corporate Tax Agreement — FIRS

The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) has explained why Nigeria did not sign the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) G20 Inclusive Framework two-pillar solution to tax challenges of the digitalized economy.

The OECD G20 Inclusive Framework two-pillar solution proposes a framework of rules aimed at tackling base erosion and profit shifting, and providing for the taxation of Multinational Enterprises (MNEs). Four member countries of the Inclusive Framework (Nigeria inclusive), out of 140, have not agreed to the Two-Pillar solution.

Nigeria’s reasons for not agreeing to the Two-Pillar solution was explained in a webinar session hosted by the FIRS last week.

The Executive Chairman of the FIRS, represented by the Group Lead, Executive Chairman’s Group, Mr M. L. Abubakar, noted that taxation of the digital economy has become a topical issue that many economies and developmental blocs are working to solve, including the OECD and the United Nations Tax Committee who have commissioned projects to produce a common front for countries to adopt.

“Nigeria has been involved in various work-streams under the OECD project and had articulated its position on the technical work towards the goal of producing a common front for countries. However, our concerns on potential negative revenue returns that the rule designs would have for developing countries were unaddressed, Nigeria abstained from committing to the rules at this time.” He stated.

He explained that the webinar was therefore to educate the general public on the modalities and impact of the statement released by the OECD Inclusive Framework on the 8th of October 2021 and to provide a broad picture on why Nigeria abstained from signing.

The webinar which was a special edition of the FIRS Taxpayer Engagement Series was hosted by Mr. Olufemi Olarinde, Technical Assistant (Tax Policy) to the Executive Chairman FIRS, while technical papers where delivered by Mr. Mathew Gbonjubola, Mr. Temitayo Orebajo, Mr. Kehinde Kajesomo, Mr, Emmanuel Eze and Ms. Aisha Isa, all staff of the FIRS.

Explaining in details, Mr. Mathew Gbonjubola, the Group Lead Special Tax Operations Group, and Nigeria’s representative at the OECD Inclusive Framework highlighted that despite the expected outcome that both Pillars will increase Global Corporate Income Tax by as much as $150 Billion per annum, with attendant favourable environment for investment and economic growth, there were serious concerns that the pillars did not address negative revenue outcome for Nigeria and other developing countries.

“The general issues that developing countries have with the outcome that was published in October 8th is the high cost of implementation. And that speaks to the complexities of the proposal in the inclusive framework statement. In every complex situation or rule, implementation and compliance will always be difficult. When implementation or compliance is difficult, there would be high cost of implementation.

“Another issue was that the economic impact assessment that was carried out on Pillar 1 and 2 were founded on an unreliable premise. The country-specific impact assessment that was done was top-down. Somebody just looked at the GDP of Nigeria, and says Nigeria’s GDP is this much and then they should be able to buy this number of shoes and things like that. And you and I know, in that kind of postulation, the margin of error is usually very wide. That exactly was what happened with this. Particularly for Nigeria, when we ran the numbers it was way off the figures that the OECD gave us.

“And the final issue most developing countries had was that the developed world, within the inclusive framework, was very indifferent to the concerns expressed by most developing countries. This you can see from the outcome, with respect to the complexity, issues of high cost of implementation and on the issue of revenue accruable to developing countries. When you look at the bulk of the money that would accrue from the project, if any, 70% – 80% will go to the developed countries. Almost nothing comes to the developing countries.” He explained.

On the specific concerns raised by Nigeria, Mr. Gbonjubola, who led Nigeria’s team on the Inclusive Framework negotiations, explained that while the whole project started out to find solutions to the challenges of a digitalised economy the outcome was completely different.

He went further to note that the statement by the OECD Inclusive Framework required all parties to remove all Digital Service Taxes and other relevant similar measures with respect to companies taxation and to commit not to introduce such measures in the future.

“The statement required the withdrawal of unilateral measures by countries. Which Nigeria does not have a problem with (Nigeria does not have any unilateral measure targeted at digital services companies). However, the paper that was released on unilateral measures was so expansive in its definition that we are concerned that the taxing rights that Nigeria has always enjoyed may be withdrawn.”

He further explained that Nigeria is unable to implement the mandatory binding resolution on arbitration because of constitutional limitations as to tax dispute resolution.

He also stated that for Nigeria, “Pillar 2 is not a deal breaker because Nigeria could work with Pillar 2. “We have a few issues with Pillar 2 but we could live with them but because Pillar 1 and 2 are a single package, since we are rejecting Pillar 1, we can’t take on Pillar 2”.

“Under the inclusive framework rule you either accept both Pillars or you reject both Pillars. You cannot pick one to the exclusion of the other. And since Nigeria is not able to join one of the pillars, it means we are out of both Pillars.”

Mr. Gbonjubola also stated that Nigeria does not see any additional revenue coming to by way of Pillar 2, though he added that it could act as a behaviour modifier for policy makers to take another look at the various tax incentives and tax waivers we have in our tax laws and begin to restructure them in other to ensure that we are not deliberately throwing away revenue.

“Nigeria could not sign up to the statement of the inclusive framework because it did not address the concerns that we had expressed as a country and it also did not take cognisance of issues around developing countries, which will make those outcomes not to provide additional revenue, and if any, very little, and at very significant cost.”

He further stated that Nigeria, which had participated in all the meetings of the working groups would continue to participate in the design of all technical notes and model rules, and would agree to the Pillars if its expressed concerns are addressed.

“And finally, just like the Honourable Minister of Finance said a couple of months ago, Nigeria would continue to participate in the inclusive framework activities particularly the design of all the technical notes and the model rules, and then, if and only if, the concerns we have expressed are addressed, then Nigeria still has the chance to join up and to sign up. But if not, we will leave that to our policy makers to decide going forward”

The Webinar had in attendance Prof. Abiola Sani, a professor of Commercial Law in Nigeria as well as other eminent tax practitioners and representatives of government and private institutions. The representatives of the Kenya and Zambia revenue authorities were also in attendance.

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