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Tax dodgers: Firms owned by Obasanjo, Omisore among others implicated by FIRS

THE Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS, on Wednesday released a list of publicly-quoted and privately owned businesses on its website listed among the namely Obasanjo Farms, owned by ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo, Davido Music Worldwide Ltd, owned by singer David Adedeji Adeleke amongst others.

Chairman of the FIRS Babatunde Fowler, who had been questioned recently by the presidency over the dwindling rate of tax collection for the past four years released the list of unwieldy tax defaulters.

Obasanjo Farms Ltd is listed as No. 17705 on the list, Davido Music Worldwide as 2387, while five outlets of Addide supermarket chains located on Lagos mainland areas of Oko-Oba, Ekoro, Fagba and Itire were listed on numbers 13137-13141.

Iyiola Omisore, a former gubernatorial candidate of the Social Democratic Party, SDP, was another high profile tax dodger whose firm Iyiola Omisore & Par was also included in the list.

Click to see the Full: FIRS

Abba Kyari, Chief of Staff to the President had, in a letter dated August 8, which he personally signed, asked Fowler to explain alleged discrepancies in budgeted collections and actual collections of tax from 2015 to 2018 when the actual amount collected as tax fell below the budgeted target.

The FIRS chairman was directed to submit a comprehensive variance analysis, which should also state the reasons for poor tax collections between 2015 and 2017, a period when the actual collections turned out to be ‘significantly worse’ than what was recorded from 2012 and 2014.

Fowler, in his response, blamed the decline in tax revenue on the 2016 recession and lower crude oil prices in recent years.

The Federal Government has announced its decision to conduct revenue assurance and Information Technology audit on the FIRS and the Nigerian Customs Service.

The audit is part of the fiscal governance and institutions project, a collaborative programme of the Federal Government and the World Bank.

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