JTB orders Ekiti varsity lecturers to comply with tax law

The Joint Tax Board has written to the Academic Staff Union of Universities, Ekiti State University, Ado-Ekiti chapter, urging compliance with the country’s new tax regime.
The leadership of ASUU, EKSU chapter, had threatened to embark on a prolonged strike action in protest against what they termed “unduly high taxes.”
The lecturers accused the state government of slamming high taxes on them.
The JTB, in a letter dated July 2, 2013, which was also copied to the institution’s Vice Chancellor, Prof. Oladipo Aina, said the new tax regime was consequent upon the Personal Income Tax (Amendment) 2011, which was signed into law by President Goodluck Jonathan.
The letter, marked JTB/GC/27/VOL.6/31, which was signed by the JTB’s Secretary, M.L. Abubakar, emphasized that the provisions of the Act did not make any provision for tax waivers or concessions for any sector of the economy.
It also absolved the state of any blame over the increase in taxes payable by workers, stressing that workers across the states now pay a uniform tax under the new tax law put in place by the Federal Government.
The letter reads in part: “The Personal Income Tax (Amendment) Act 2011 was assented to by Mr. President, Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan in year 2011 and its implementation has commenced fully across the country.
“We wish to notify you that all sectors of the economy are complying using the new provisions of the law to pay taxes accurately. It is pertinent to clarify that the sixth schedule to the Personal Income Tax (Amendment) Act 2011 duly states the reliefs granted to tax payers.
“Sequel to the above, there is no provision in the Act for tax waivers or concession for any sector of the economy, as tax payers are expected to pay their taxes promptly and accurately.
“However, government employees seeking any form of assistance can approach their state government for approval of allowance or any form of palliative but not a reduction in their tax liabilities.”
It is recalled that the Ekiti State Government has consistently said it is not responsible for tax regulation, stressing that tax is strictly a Federal Government responsibility.
According to the Chairman of the State Board of Internal Revenue, Ishola Akingbade: “The state has no control over the issue of tax, which is now on the federal list as the states are now affected by the new tax law in force. These are firmly fixed by an Act of the National Assembly and so is uniform nationwide. No state of the federation or establishment can alter it.”
Akingbade added that what the state is doing is to ensure that the right taxes are paid in line with the tax law, adding that taxes payable by EKSU lectures is not in any way different from what their colleagues in other universities are paying.
Meanwhile, Section 182 (2) of the Personal Income Tax (Amendment) Act 2011 empowers the Accountant General of the Federation to deduct directly from the budgetary allocation of any government ministry, department or agency any withheld and unremitted taxes and to transfer such deduction to the beneficiary state government upon written request by such a state government.