Lagos State Government has announced plans to address the complaints of multiple-taxation in the centre of excellence.
State Commissioner for Finance, Dr. Mustapha Akinkunmi said Mondau at a stakeholder’s forum on taxation and revenue generation that the process of streamlining revenue collection must involve introducing technology for ease of payment and reviewing existing laws, saying that “We have to work together with the Local Governments to resolve the financial payment.”
He made reference to a retreat held by the state government at the weekend, saying a conclusion was reached that Lagos’ role in the nation was critical, especially with dwindling oil revenue and fortune.
According to him, “oil revenue is now a thing of the past and we have to generate revenue internally. During the last election governorship campaign by Governor Akinwunmi Ambode, one key thing people complain about was multiple taxation and this government is about inclusion and we demonstrated that during our last budget.”
“We must deal with multiple taxation squarely,” he said, adding that the issue of multiple taxation must stop.
He stated that the outcome of the meeting would determine whether there was need for any legislative changes “which we need to bring to the House of Assembly.”
Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Finance, Tairu Tunde Ogunleye said for too long, there had been a running battle with Local Governments in the state in terms of revenue generation.
He said areas of conflict had been with the Lagos Inland Revenue Service, LIRS, Vehicles Inspection Service, VIS, Tourism, Lottery Board, Commerce, LASAA and the Ministry of Finance.
Ogunleye said even though the constitution gave right of collection of levies to some level of governments, the state and local governments had been collaborating in the collection of certain taxes.
“Some of the areas of collaboration are in the collection of Land Use Charge. We have put the tenement rate collection in the Land Use Charge which we give to them after collection. This was an agreement between us. Another example is LASAA. We help the local government to collect this tax and give it back to them. There is also the Wharf Landing Fees.
“This meeting will give us opportunity to trash out areas of conflict and the way forward. The aim is to streamline revenue collection in the state between us and the local governments. There must be decorum; there should not be cases where the state collect and local governments want to collect again. We can solve the issues here once and for all.”