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to fg hires nigerians firms foreign 150 wealthy investigate

Fg Hires Foreign Firms To Investigate 150 Wealthy Nigerians
#1
There seems to be serious apprehension among some
wealthy Nigerians as the federal government says it is
investigating 150 of them, mostly tax defaulters.
The government said it engaged the services of Kroll, a
United Kingdom-based forensic and assets-tracing
organisation, to carry out this investigation.
It is understood that part of the firm’s brief is to
effectively trace the assets of the very wealthy
Nigerians at home and abroad.
Punch reports that the names of 150 very wealthy
Nigerians are on the first batch to be investigated,
according to finance minister Kemi Adeosun.
Adeosun revealed this while speaking with journalists
on Thursday, July 13.
The minister however refused to name the other
foreign organisations that would engage in the
investigation of the wealthy Nigerians.
According to Adeosun, the country needed to match the
lifestyle of the wealthy people with the amount of tax
they were paying to the federal government.
“How much we recover from their purses is not as
important as getting people into the tax net and paying
the right taxes.
“Majority of people who are paying taxes at the moment
are the Pay As You Earn; most of the people whose
taxes are being deducted at source.
“But the people who are evading taxes are either the
people who own their businesses or the high net worth
individuals.
“And ordinarily, they are supposed to pay the biggest
share of the tax revenue. What is happening now is that
the lower-end people are carrying more of the burden,
which is unfair.
“Everybody has to carry their fair share according to
their level of income. That is how progressive taxes
work all over the world.
“Remember that tax is one of the instruments the
government uses to redistribute income; to take from
the rich to support the poor.
“That is very fundamental. Not only do we recover
money from the people, it (VAIDS) is meant to ensure
that people pay the right taxes going forward.
“The firms that we are using to trace assets
internationally are working alongside the projects that
we have locally.
“And that project puts together records of property
ownership, foreign exchange allocations, company
ownership from the Corporate Affairs Commission, and
even private jet registration so that we can build
profiles of people so that we have an idea of how much
tax should this person be paying according to his or her
lifestyle.
“And then we compare it with how much tax they are
actually paying, and that is giving us a lot of
information that hopefully will encourage people to
come forward to do the right thing,” she was quoted as
saying.
Meanwhile, it was earlier reported that the inequality
report released by Oxfam International on Wednesday,
May 17, revealed that the combined wealth of five
richest Nigerians, put at $29.9 billion, could end
extreme poverty in the country.
The report, entitled ‘Inequality in Nigeria, Exploring
the Drivers’ and obtained in Abuja, exposed the large
and growing gap between the rich and poor in Nigeria.
Watch this video of a recent protest held in Lagos
against bad governance:
  


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