The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) has described collaboration among regulatory bodies as critical in deepening FIRS institutional framework through qualitative reporting and effective representation of their clients.
Mr Muhammad Nami, the Executive Chairman of FIRS said this when he hosted a meeting of Council Members of the Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (CITN), Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN), and the Association of National Accountants of Nigeria (ANAN).
A statement issued on Thursday by Nami’s Special Assistant on Media and Communication, Mr Johannes Wojuola, explained that the meeting was to discuss the implementation of an MoU on the standardisation of tax practice in Nigeria.
He also appealed to the professional bodies regulating tax practice to lead conversations on tax policy and laws in Nigeria.
While calling for a value-based leadership approach, Nami urged the professional bodies to work hand-in-hand with FIRS.
“Our professional bodies need to speak on matters of tax policies and tax laws, especially on proposals to annual Finance Bills.
“We also urge you to help the Service to deepen its institutional framework through quality reporting and effective representation of clients by our professional colleagues.
“We need to stem the tides in improving financial reporting to reduce the spate of ‘copy and paste’ financial reporting system as we experience today,” Nami said.
He further said that FIRS had adopted renewed strategies to tackle financial reporting concerns.
According to Nami, the FIRS has created new departments which are at the forefront of unravelling financial reporting issues through data mining.
They are the Intelligence, Strategic Data Mining and Analysis Department, the Special Crimes Department, the Tax Incentives Management Department and the Emerging and Special Taxes Department.
He also noted that the FIRS alongside State Inland Revenue Services is collaborating with the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) to build a databank to improve tax investigation.
“Other strategies include the accreditation of tax consultants and auditors in the FIRS, the review of data from the automatic exchange of information as well as increased enforcement actions,’’ Nami said.
The Presidents of the three bodies, Prof. Benjamin Osisioma of ANAN, Mr Tijjani Musa Isa of ICAN and Mr Adesina Adedayo of CITN commended the FIRS executive chairman for showing leadership in pushing for and enabling a resolution of disputes between the three bodies.
Osisioma said that the failure to sustain cooperation among the three bodies would lead to chaos in tax practice regulation in Nigeria.
“If we fail to cooperate and collaborate, we would destroy what we are trying to build. nan.”