Nigeria’s Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun has accused some contractors of the federal government and their agencies of evading tax.
Adeosun, who made this revelation via a statement issued on Wednesday, said the development was discovered following the sampling exercise carried out by the ministry of finance.
She said the federal government had started reviewing the tax compliance records of contractors who have received payments from the federal government and its agencies in the last seven years.
“It was a matter of concern that those who earned money directly from government, which is both traceable and verifiable, still failed to pay the correct taxes thereon,” she said.
According to the statement, the ministry of finance and office of the accountant general of the federation are now compiling records of all payments exceeding N100m made in the last seven years including details of the beneficiary bank accounts.
The statement further added that “all agencies have 30 days to return the information on payments made, and accounting officers are required to certify the accuracy of the data supplied. Deliberate omission or manipulation of data by accounting officers will attract sanction”.
It said a database project called Project Light House, which would build comprehensive profiles of tax payers using bank verification numbers, foreign exchange allocations, land registry records and information obtained from foreign governments, has commenced.
The minister said the Muhammadu Buhari-led administration is committed to improving tax compliance as this is related to efforts being made to reduce dependence on oil.