Minister stops FIRS from revenue collection for FCT

In line with the new act of the Federal Capital Territory, the Minister, Mohammed Bello, has stopped the Federal Inland? Revenue Service from further collecting revenue for the territory.

The amended FCT Act came into being in 2015 and one of its provisions make the FCT Internal Revenue Service the sole revenue collector for the territory.

The minister, it was gathered in Abuja, has written the FIRS Chairman, Babatunde Fowler, that the services of the Federal Government’s agency were no longer required in the collection of revenue for FCT.

Reliable sources? in the FCT Administration confirmed that the minister has consequently directed the FCT Inland Revenue Services to solely be responsible for revenue collection in the territory.

Both the FCT and the FIRS had agreed based on the directive from the Presidency that the FIRS assist to jointly with FCT IRS collect revenue in the territory on behalf of the FCT Administration pending when the FCT IRS possesses the capacity.

But an informed source in the FCT Administration told InsideBusiness that the stoppage of revenue collection by FIRS was not unconnected with the 4 per cent cost of collection, which accrue to the FIRS from the revenue collected in the FCT.

Unlike the FIRS, the FCT IRS does not enjoy cost of collection.

The FCT IRS collects gross revenue of between N3 billion and N4 billion monthly, according to sources at the ministry.

“The minister has communicated with the FIRS that the FCT will be solely responsible for revenue collection from October 2016?,” the source said.

It was further learnt that a dissatisfied FIRS Chairman had put a call to the FCT Permanent Secretary, Tope Ajakaiye, on why he wasn’t informed ahead of the decision.

Fowler was told by Ajakaiye that he was just hearing the decision from him.

An official of the FCT IRS, who spoke on condition of anonymity, also confirmed that the FIRS was no longer collecting revenue for FCTA.

The official disclosed that by the FCT law, FIRS wasn’t supposed to collect revenue for the FCT Administration.

“The FCT IRS has the capacity to collect revenue for the FCT Administration. And we have been netting between N3 billion and N4 billion monthly,” the source stated.

When contacted, the Special Adviser to the FCT Minister on Media, Sani Abubakar, said he wasn’t aware but would find out the true position and communicate.

Abubakar had not responded as at press time?.

Sources at the FIRS said the Service has not stopped completely, adding that the FCT will be collecting personal income tax and payee in the territory.

He said: “FCT IRS just started about one month ago.

“FIRS will still collect its basic collection, which include VAT, CIT, education tax and the Petroleum Products Tax.

“We got the directives to it during the current regime.

“It’s a distraction to FIRS.”

The FIRS official, who preferred anonymity, stated that the directive that the FIRS should assist FCT came from the Presidency because the territory does not have the spread and requisite expertise to handle it.

The official said: “So the arrangement is that we will assist them and stop when they have the capacity.

“It’s not a permanent arrangement, but stop gap measures.

“I think FCT is now in a position to do it now.”

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