We’ve found another 130,000 people who probably underpaid taxes – Kemi Adeosun

Kemi Adeosun, minister of finance, says the ministry has found a new batch of 130,000 people who may have underpaid taxes over the years.

The minister made this known on Tuesday when she appeared on a morning programme on Nigerian Television Authority (NTA).

She said the data was compiled from by Project Lighthouse in preparation for the closure of the Voluntary Assets and Income Declaration Scheme (VAIDS), which ends on March 31.

“The data have been received from a number of sources including land registries of the governments of Lagos, Kaduna, Kano and Ogun states as well as the federal capital territory,” she said.

“In addition, Nigeria has been able to request data from a number of nations, including traditional tax havens. The data have been received from a number of foreign jurisdictions under the exchange of information protocols.

“Under the exchange of information protocols, this information relates to bank records and financial filings for tax purposes and is obtained from tax havens who are signatories to the information sharing agreements such as the British Virgin Islands and Mauritius.”

According to Adeosun, common ways of violating tax laws are under-declaration or non-declaration of income, non-remittance of value-added tax to the federal government, charging of non-allowable personal expenses to company accounts, particularly with reference to overseas school fees and inconsistency between income declared for tax purposes and the value of assets owned.

She advised non-compliant taxpayers to seek professional advice and to also consult relevant literature available from the tax authorities on tax rules.

Adeosun also said that there would be no extension of the VAIDS deadline, explaining that sufficient time had been provided for taxpayers to voluntary and truthfully declare their assets and income.

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