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FG orders immediate dismantling of all revenue collection road blocks nationwide

By News Express on 15/08/2014

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The National Economic Council (NEC) yesterday directed the Acting Inspector General of Police, Suleiman Abba, to dismantle all road blocks mounted on nation’s highways for revenue collection, so as to curb the growing incidences of illegal multiple taxation in the country.

NEC also approved the release of N1.3 billion from the Federal Ministry of Power Intervention Fund for financing manpower development and training of 3,700 trainees under the National Power Sector Apprenticeship Scheme (NAPSAS).

The training was necessitated by need to close manpower gap, which existed since 23 years ago, when there had not been structured skills training for the technical manpower that works in generation, transmission and distribution sub-sectors of power.

These formed parts of the major decisions taken by NEC during its yesterday’s monthly meeting, presided over by Vice President Namadi Sambo at the Presidential Villa.

Governor Willy Obiano of Anambra, flanked by governors of Gombe and Kogi,  Alhaji Ibrahim Dankwambo and Idris Wada respectively, as well as Minister of National Planning made the disclosure while briefing state house correspondents shortly after the meeting.

Obiano explained that following the receipt of brief from the Ministerial Implementation Committee (MIC) on the harmonisation of taxes, it was discovered from its findings “The 1998 taxes and levies act is overdue for review, there is duplication of some taxes and levies at states and local governments, taxes and levies administered by some states are not backed by appropriation legislation.”

He said among other recommendations, MIC had recommended the discontinuation of the practice of using non-revenue officials for collection of taxes and levies by states and federal agencies as this was contrary to section 2 of the taxes and levies act.

Further recommendation include that states revenue boards should be empowered to automate their tax operations for effectiveness, processing, accountability and to reduce leakages.

According to him, NEC resolved “To direct IG of Police to dismantle all ‘road blocks’ mounted on highways for revenue collection,” while it further resolved that the MIC committee should work with the attorney generals of six states representing the six geo-political zones to incorporate the inputs and comments of members of the council and revert to it at next meeting.

The zonal representatives are as follows: Enugu for South-East, Lagos for South-West, Bayelsa for South-South, Plateau for North-Central, Kebbi for North-West and Borno for North-East.

Also speaking, Dankwambo and Wada highlighted the National Power Sector Apprenticeship Scheme (NAPSAS), based on presentation made by the Minister of Power, Professor Chinedu Nebo.

Some of the objectives of the scheme include trainning qualitative and skilled middle and low level manpower for the power sector; provide employment opportunities to meet government’s job creation projections for unemployed youths, which has direct correlation with Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth projection; and meet the local content expectation of government in the privatised electricity industry across the value chain.

Wada explained that 3,700 trainees, 100 each from 36 states and FCT are to be fully sponsored by Federal Government under the scheme, just as a total of N1.3 billion is to be disbursed from the Federal Ministry of Power Intervention Fund for the scheme

Further, the council received an update on the National Integrated Infrastructure Masterplan (NIIMP) and advised states and FCT to establish appropriate enabling legal institutional frameworks; align their infrastructure programmes with NIIMP; and work towards developing State Integrated Infrastructure Masterplans (SIIMPs).

•Text courtesy of Daily Newswatch. Photo shows Vice President Namadi Sambo, who presided over the NEC meeting.

Source News Express

Posted 15/08/2014 2:27:51 PM





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