The Federal Government in a bid to get more people into the tax net via Voluntary Asset and Income Declaration Scheme, has launched an initiative with the aim of making about 180 operators in the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise sector of the economy tax-compliant.
The initiative, funded by OXFAM, is focused on two states, Lagos and Edo, and aims to capture 90 SMEs in each state, who have no tax record.
Speaking on the sidelines of a tax compliance clinic/sensitisation for MSMEs, organised by the Nigerian Association of Small and Medium Enterprises, the Executive Secretary, NASME, Mr Eke Ubiji, explained that the programme was part of an ongoing series in the initiative to get more SMEs to be tax-compliant.
The one-day programme was about understanding the requirements and benefits of tax compliance.
Ubiji said, “We have done this before with the Federal Inland Revenue Service. The idea of VAIDS is to enable people that have not been tax-compliant to comply.
According to him, the sensitisation programme will continue till November.
Ubiji revealed that the organisers of the programme had set up tax clinics during the programme to offer free service, consultation and legal representation for SMEs wishing to file their tax returns at the venue of the event.
In his address, the Chairman of council, NASME, Mr Degun Agboade, who was represented by a member of the governing council representing the private sector, Mr Ladipo Bankole, urged the tax consultants chosen for the project and the MSME beneficiaries to take the assignment seriously.
He said, “We cannot afford to fail. As you are aware, the projects have deadlines in the two focal states (Lagos, June 20; Edo, June 26); the VAIDS will come to an end by June 30. As such, all hands must be on deck to meet up with the deadline.”