The Nigerian government has been looking for a way to raise its tax revenue. Part of the measures included a tax amnesty programme that lasted for 9 months.

That did work relatively well. But the tax authorities, the Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS seemed unsatisfied with the results. So, they went after billionaire tax defaulters through the money deposit banks.

And in less than a month after, the agency announced the collection of 12.66 billion naira in tax revenue from this category of Nigerians.

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The Executive Chairman, FIRS, Tunde Fowler, stated this on Friday when he received the new Minister of Finance, Hajia Zainab Ahmed, during her spot visit to the Revenue House in Abuja, according to a statement made available to newsmen on Sunday.

Fowler told the minister that the initiative had pooled about 12.66 billion naira into the government coffers.

He stated: “The FIRS wrote to all commercial banks in May 2018 requesting for a list of companies, partnerships, and enterprises with banking turnover of 1 billion naira and above. This activity is aimed at ascertaining those companies that are compliant with the tax laws and those that are not compliant. So far, the non-compliant organisations have paid about 12.66 billion naira.

“The FIRS will continue to implement initiatives that will drive compliance and generate revenue by continuous taxpayer enlightenment; implementation of the Auto VAT Collect in other sectors of the economy; simplification of the tax processes, especially for small taxpayers; strengthening collaboration with other agencies such as the Corporate Affairs Commission, states’ boards of internal revenue; Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment; and the Nigeria Customs Service.”