From all indications, the Voluntary Assets and Income Declaration Scheme (VAIDS) is proving to be effective as the Nigerian government has so far recovered ₦30 billion.
VAIDS was designed by the Federal Government to allow taxpayers in the country regularise their tax status. Part of the objectives of the initiative is to give the government access to a sustainable revenue source while also building a credible tax database.
The voluntary declaration can be done online or via states or federal government tax authority offices. It started in July 2017 and was initially scheduled to end by March 31, 2018 but was extended by 3 months.
Although the programme was extended, the grace period for waiver of interest and penalties has lapsed. And as it stands, every taxable individual and businesses that have been operating for 18 months or more have until June 30, 2018, to make use of the VAIDS window to avoid being treated as a willful tax evader.
According to Premium Times, taxpayers that made use of the VAIDS window will be issued a declaration certificate which has been approved by the Finance Minister, Kemi Adeosun.
The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) Chairman, Babatunde Fowler revealed that of the total recovered figure, 90% was collected through the FIRS while states tax authorities helped recovered 10%.
Fowler also claims that the database of taxpayers in the country has increased by over 5 million within the last two years.
Also speaking after the week’s Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting, Adeosun revealed that the council has approved the review of the nation’s tax law system to exempt the charges of Value Added Taxes (VAT) on some goods and services.
The review will also remove obsolete, ambiguous and contradictory provisions in the tax laws.