In view of the lock down orders by the Federal and state governments against the COVID-19 Pandemic, the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) Chairman, Muhammadu Nami, has issued a “Statement on palliative measures to cushion effects on Taxpayers”.
In the statement made available to TheNigeriaLawyer (TNL), the FIRS boss said: “On 31 March 2020, the Management of FIRS had a virtual meeting, following the Federal Government’s lockdown of FCT, Lagos, and Ogun States on 29th March 2020 as one of the measures to contain the spread of Corona Virus, COVID – 19. We discussed specifically the necessity of FIRS to remain committed to supporting the Taxpayers to continue to thrive even when faced with the pressure of generating increased tax revenue for the Government.”
Nami added that “Throughout the days and months ahead, we want to reassure you that supporting Nigeria’s diverse and dynamic businesses through this uncertain time is our topmost priority. The response to the current situation is evolving rapidly, with advice and guidance changing daily. In the meantime, FIRS has setup a number of measures to provide support to TaxPayers in managing their tax obligations as they are impacted by the coronavirus outbreak.”
The number of measures put in place by FIRS are:
1. “Taxpayers can now take advantage of our simple, user friendly and robust eFiling process to submit their documents online instead of visiting the tax offices. Our dedicated email addresses for each of the offices are available on our website: firs.gov.ng
2. “Late Returns Penalty (LRP) has been waived for taxpayers who pay early and file later. Supporting documents can also be emailed to the dedicated email addresses or submitted later to the tax offices by those who are not able to use the email facility.
• “Remittance of VAT on or before 21stof every month has been extended to the last day of the month.
1. “Taxpayers facing challenges in sourcing for FOREX to offset their liabilities are hereby given the option of paying in Naira at the prevailing Investors & Exporters (I & E) FOREX window rate on the day of payment.
2. “The period to file PIT returns for Foreign Affairs, Non Residents, Military and Police has been extended to the 30th June, 2020.
3. “Field Audit, Investigations and Monitoring visits have been suspended till further notice.”
The FIRS boss commended “the businesses that have made commitments, some of which have been followed through with payments. I thank you for your demonstration of uncommon patriotism.”
In conclusion, Muhammadu Nami said ”My team and I are committed to, as a priority, providing support to all Taxpayers as directed by President Muhammadu Buhari in his lockdown speech of Sunday 29th March 2020.
“We will keep you updated with information specific to Taxpayers as it becomes expedient and on how the Service can continue to support you while we maintain essential services in these trying times.
“For further advice please contact firstname.lastname@example.org”