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We Generate Less Than 20% IGR Monthly – Bayelsa Govt

The Bayelsa State Government has disclosed that the monthly Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) of the state was currently less than 20 per cent.

It however decried the comparatively low level of tax compliance in the state, which it said has been responsible for the poor internally generated revenue (IGR) profile of the state.

The Deputy Governor, Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo, stated this on Wednesday when the Yenagoa and District Society of the Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (CITN) paid him a courtesy call in Government House, Yenagoa.

In a statement issued by Doubara Atasi, Senior Special Assistant to the Deputy Governor on Media, Ewhrudjakpo who frowned on the poor attitude of corporate and private citizens in the state towards tax payment, said the state government had been grappling with the issue of taxation in its drive to raise the IGR of the state.

He thanked the members of the CITN for bringing up the issue for discussion, noting that the government was ready to work with the Institute to improve the state’s IGR.

According to the Deputy Governor, all over the world, governments depend on taxes to meet public expenditure on utilities and services, stressing that the entitlement mentality among Bayelsans was largely responsible for the problem.

“As a government, we have been grappling with taxation. I am happy that you raised the issue of public enlightenment.

“The problem of our state is this entitlement mentality where people expect government to do everything for them. People see paying taxes as a forbidden fruit.

“Our IGR from tax payment is less than 20 percent of the revenue of the state. So help us spread the gospel of taxation. “All over the world, governments depend on taxation. Over 80 per cent of the revenue of the UK comes from taxes.

“The Federal Government has recently introduced artificial intelligence in tax assessment and tracking, so the CITN should key into it. We are ready to work with you to see how we can improve our IGR,” he said.

Speaking earlier, the Chairman of the Yenagoa and District Society of the Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria, Azebi Bestman Ayabeke, said the visit was intended to draw more support from the government towards the Institute’s public enlightenment programmes on taxation.

Azebi, who expressed gratitude to the government for always supporting the activities of the body, and for donating five plots of land to the CITN located in the central business district of Yenagoa, pledged the continued support of the institute for the policies and programs of the Prosperity Administration.

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