Evidence of tax payment will be a condition for operating a bank account from January, according to the Financial bill passed by the National Assembly.
The Bill, submitted to the lawmakers with Budget 2020 by President Muhammadu Buhari, is designed to improve the financial operations of the country and streamline the tax regime.
It is expected to be signed with the budget before the end of the month, to actualize the return to the January – December budget cycle.
According to a section of the Bill, banks will require anybody opening an account to provide his Tax Identification Number (TIN)
Those who already have accounts with banks will also be required to provide their TIN.
There are 30 million Bank Verification Numbers (BVN)-linked accounts.
The intention is to make sure that more people are captured into the tax net.
According to the Joint Tax Board, the tax identification number (TIN) is a unique identifier for an individual or a company for tax remittance.
The TIN is prepared by the tax office and issued for proper identification and verification.
Applying for TIN is free. The TIN generation process is real-time and should not exceed 48 hours after a request is submitted.
Another major feature of the Financial Bill is the hike in Value Added Tax (VAT) to 7.5 per cent from the extant five per cent.
Also in the bill, emails will be accepted by the tax authorities as a formal channel of correspondence with taxpayers.
The bill will also strategically “promote fiscal equity by mitigating instances of regressive taxation; reform domestic tax laws to align with global best practices; introduce tax incentives for investments in infrastructure and capital markets; support small businesses in line with the ongoing Ease of Doing Business Reforms; and raise revenues for the Government by various fiscal measures.”
Under the proposed Personal Income Tax Act: the bill will state that pension contributions no longer require the approval of the Joint Tax Board (JTB) to be tax-deductible.
The bill when signed into law, will remove the tax exemption on withdrawals from pension schemes except the prescribed conditions are met.
The bill will come up with a penalty for failure to deduct tax by agents appointed for tax deduction. This penalty is 10 per cent of the tax not deducted, plus interest at the prevailing monetary policy rate of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
The conditions attached to tax exemption on gratuities will be removed by the bill, meaning that gratuities are unconditionally tax exempt. The duties currently performed by the Joint Tax Board (JTB) as it relates to administering the Personal Income Tax Act, will now be performed by the FIRS.
Another penalty that will come into effect when the bill becomes law will be the penalty for the late filing of the Value Added Tax (VAT) returns.
The penalty for failure to register for VAT will be reviewed upwards to N50,000 for the first month of default and N25,000 for each subsequent month of default.
The penalty for failure to notify FIRS of change in company address will be reviewed upwards to N50,000 for the first month of default and N25,000 for each subsequent month of default. This penalty also covers the failure to notify FIRS of permanent cessation of trade or business.
Similar to the VAT amendment, the bill is also introducing Capital Gains Tax (CGT) exemption on Group reorganizations, subject to the following conditions being met.
Assets are sold to a Nigerian company and is for the better organization of the trade or business;
The entities involved are within a recognized group 365 days before the transaction, and the relevant assets are not disposed of earlier than 365 days after the transaction.
The current practice is that companies send an approval request letter under CITA S29(9) to the FIRS, and include a CGT exemption request. Currently, the CGT Act imposes CGT on compensation for loss of employment above N10,000.
The bill seeks to expand the coverage of this provision by renaming it “compensation for loss” and increase the minimum threshold from N10,000 to N10 million.
BREAKING: Minister Of Transportation Rotimi Amaechi Attacked By ‘Misguided’ Nigerians In Spain
Some persons described as “misguided Nigerians” on Friday attacked the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, in Spain.
Amaechi said he was attacked at an event on climate change held in Madrid, Spain.
The minister disclosed this on his Twitter handle, @ChibuikeAmaechi.
He said Spanish police officers succeeded in stopping his attackers before they could hurt him.
He did not disclose the identities of his attackers.
The minister had tweeted:
Some minutes ago, I was attacked by a few misguided Nigerians while on national assignment at a climate change event in Madrid, Spain. They were quickly repelled by the Spanish police before they could do any harm. I am fine. I was not hurt. Thanks for your support & prayers.
— Chibuike.R. Amaechi (@ChibuikeAmaechi) December 6, 2019
Recall that the immediate past Deputy President of the Senate, Ike Ekweremadu, in August, confirmed a physical assault on him by some members of the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra in Nuremberg, Germany,
Ekweremadu confirmed the attack in a statement released by his Media Assistant, Uche Anichukwu, in Abuja.
The senator, who also gave an account of the event on his social media handle @iamekweremadu, also said that he was safe.
He condemned the attack and said he had immediately reported it to the Nigerian Ambassador to Germany, Mr. Yusuf Tuggar.
Ekweremadu had said, “I attended the Second Annual Cultural Festival and Convention organized by Ndi-Igbo Germany in Nurnberg today where I was billed to give a keynote address along with the President-General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Chief Nnia Nwodo, who, however, could not make it eventually.
“I was given a resounding welcome by Ndigbo in Germany and everything went smoothly until some men, who identified themselves as IPOB members stormed the venue and began to complain about the killings in the South East, stressing that there would be no Igbo event at the venue.
“I tried to engage them, but when they became unruly, I had to leave the venue. The organizers also invited the police and I was accompanied out of the venue.
“Much as I am disappointed in their conduct, especially as I am one of the persons who have spoken up on justice for Ndigbo, the Python Dance, judicial killings in Igbo land and elsewhere both on the floor of the Senate and in my written and personal engagements with the Presidency and the media as well as rallied the southeast Senate Caucus to secure Mazi Nnamdi Kanu’s release with Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe taking him on bail to douse tension in the South East, I nevertheless do not hold this to heart against them, for they know not what they do.”
Sowore Vs DSS: Suspend The Nigerian Constitution, Declare Full Military Regime —- Deji Adeyanju Advises Buhari
Convener of Concerned Nigerian, Deji Adeyanju, on Friday charged President Muhammadu Buhari to suspend the country’s constitution, disband National Assembly.
Speaking with newsmen, Adeyanju also charged Buhari to abrogate the judiciary and transform into a Military Head of State because he is a “tyrant.”
He was reacting after operatives of the Department of State Services, DSS, invaded the courtroom of an Abuja Federal High Court, chased away lawyers before re-arresting Omoyele Sowore, convener of RevolutionNow Movement.
Adeyanju said: “This is tyranny taken too far. We are now in a full military regime. Buhari should suspend the constitution, disband the national assembly, abrogate the judiciary and come out fully as military head of state.
“You saw the way they stormed the court like gangsters, chased away lawyers and took him away.
“Buhari is a tyrant. He has no human Sympathy.”
This is coming less than a day after he was released by the DSS after an Abuja Federal High Court ordered for his release within 24 hours.
Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu also ordered the DSS to pay the sum of N100,000 to Sowore, for refusing to release him on bail despite two court orders to that effect.
Hadiza Lied! We Never Sponsored Thugs To Harass NPA MD – Ocean Marine Solutions
The management of Ocean Marine Solutions Limited (OMSL) has debunked any knowledge or involvement in the physical attack of the Managing Director of Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Ms. Hadiza Bala Usman, at the National Assembly.
NPA boss Ms. Hadiza Usman petitioned the President of the Senate, Dr. Ahmad Lawan alleging that she was physically attacked by hoodlums at the premises of the National Assembly in Abuja on Tuesday.
She claimed that her attack was sponsored by Chairman of Messrs Ocean Maritime Solutions Limited (OMSL), Captain Wells Okunbo apparently over the decision of the NPA on the Secure Anchorage issue after attending an investigative hearing in the Assembly.
She said that she was only saved a bigger assault by her security agents who took her into Senator Danjuma Goje’s office where she waited for the hoodlums to leave.
Reacting to the allegation, Commodore Chuma Adogu (rtd), said the allegation was a falsehood and a figment of imagination, saying the Chairman of OMSL, Captain Wells Okunbo, a fine gentleman who has served the nation diligently in various capacities, could not have sponsored thugs to attack the NPA boss.
Commodore Adogu (retired) noted that on that Tuesday there was no any sign of such alleged attach or rented crowd in the premises of the National Assembly that could warrant such allegation, maintaining that OMSL Management came to the National Assembly just like other invited organizations on the day of the investigation by the Joint Committee of the Senate investigating the Secure Anchorage Area (SAA).
‘’On the day of the investigation at the National Assembly, we came like other invited organizations and we never came with any thugs or rented crowd to harass anybody talkless the Managing Director of NPA. The security at the premises of the National Assembly was very tight as everybody was routinely checked and controlled while entering thus forestalling any rented crowd or thugs to gain entrance. We came before the panel and presented our position in the SAA without nursing hatred against anyone.
‘’Let me make it clear to the Nigerian public that OMSL is a responsible corporate organization with a lot of Nigerians working as its employees. We are mindful of this and never can we trade it away. I repeat we do not have hands nor did our Chairman sponsor any group of thugs to attack Ms. Hadiza Bala Usman. We see this as part of the attempts to discredit OMS and distract attention from the main issue which is already with the Senate’’ he submitted.