Enugu Govt To Recover N13bn FG Debt

The Enugu State Gov
ernment has vowed to employ every available means, to recover the over N13 billion niara debt from Federal Government institutions operating in the state.
Chairman of the state  Board of Internal Revenue, chief Emeka Odo, who stated this in Enugu yesterday said, the move became necessary because of the present economic realities in Nigeria.
According to him, enforcing action against the affected federal agencies is also important because, it is no news that most state governments, including Enugu, rely on Internally Generated Revenue (IGR), to fund their projects.
He regretted that some establishments which enjoyed patronage from the state government would blatantly refuse to remit to the host government taxes deducted from members of their staff.
“For instance, the Federal College of Education, Ehamufu, is owing the state government over N197 million in taxes.
“The University of Nigeria (UNN), Nsukka, is owing us over N10 billion, the University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital too is owing us over N3billion, National Orthopedic Hospital, Enugu is owing us over  N131 million.
“These are taxes that have been deducted but not remitted to the state government. And we are appealing to all the institutions that are owing that they should please hurry and remit these monies that have been deducted from their workers’ salaries as taxes.
“They should remit this money to the state government so that government can meet its obligations to its citizens.”
The chairman, hinted that the indebtedness had spanned over a five-year period, adding that the state government would no longer condone such impunity.
“It worries us in the Board of Internal Revenue when otherwise reputable institutions start behaving like outlaws and we have been in dialogue with these institutions that they should begin to pay this backlog of unpaid taxes.
“The monies we are asking them to pay are not coming from their allocation, these are monies that have been deducted from staff over the last five years that are not remitted.
“That is why it’s very worrisome that a responsible officer of an institution deducts taxes and fails to remit to the state government.
“It’s a crime under the Personal Income Tax Act, we give them up to the end of this month to make those remittances otherwise we start enforcement action against them.”
He said that some commercial banks operating in the state were also not left out in the defaulting list.