The Ekiti state government has come under fire from stakeholders in the informal sector, who have accused it of imposing multiple taxes on them without providing adequate services.
The stakeholders, who formed a group called ‘Tax for Service Group,’ expressed their dissatisfaction during a media engagement organised by the New Initiative for Social Development (NISD) in collaboration with the Nigerian Situation Room.
The group, which comprises hoteliers, traders, artisans, and other small business owners, said they are paying various taxes, charges, and levies to the government, but they are not seeing any improvement in the infrastructure and security of the state. They said the multiple taxation is affecting their businesses and the welfare of the masses.
The chairman of the group, Prof. Christopher Oluwadare, who was represented by the group’s secretary, Akin Abimbola, said the group is determined to monitor the government’s activities and stop tax leakages. He said the group will also educate its members on the importance of paying taxes, as well as challenge the government on the use of tax revenue.
Oluwadare said the group is not against paying taxes, but they want the government to be transparent and accountable. He said the group will also resist any attempt by the government to impose double or multiple taxation on them. He said the group wants the government to grant them special waivers and incentives to boost their businesses.
The group’s chairman said the group was formed as a result of a stakeholders’ meeting held on October 3, where they discussed the challenges of taxation in the state. He said the group is appealing to the government to dialogue with them and address their grievances.
The group’s media engagement was part of a project titled “Improving Governance through Tax for Service in Ekiti State,” which aims to promote tax justice and accountability in the state.