The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) has concluded plans to introduce a new tax policy in its efforts to generate more funds to meet pressing needs.
The administration said the new tax policy to be known as event tax, was necessary to increase the revenue base of the government.
Speaking to newsmen shortly after the weekly council meeting of the FCT administration, the director of economic planning and statistics, Mallam Isah Ari, said the new tax policy would only require that residents and other visitors who patronise various entertainment spots in the territory pay 5 per cent VAT.
He further revealed that with the present tax regime in the territory, the FCTA was losing over N50 million every month.
“We’ve done a survey in Wuse and Maitama with just 10 institutions and discovered that we lose more than N50 million monthly. All we are asking for is that residents who go to hotels or relaxation centres should pay 5 per cent as VAT,” he said.
Speaking further, Ari explained, “we need this money to provide infrastructure in the territory. Everything in Abuja appears to be too free and we are only asking people to pay something small so we can provide the needed infrastructure. People are now using POS. We are going to collect the new taxes through e-services. We’ll have people that will verify how much was made in a week to ascertain how the various establishments pay.”
Fielding questions on whether the new tax policy has legal backing, Ari argued that the FCTA had the right to collect taxes like every other state.
“There are two issues. If you’re talking about Board of Internal Revenue, FIRS is collecting on behalf of the FCT administration. The court has just given a judgment that NTDC doesn’t have the powers to collect hotel taxes. So, we will need to start collecting that.
“FCT is like a state. We can make little laws. Some people took FCT to court over the ‘Park and Pay Policy’ and we won. The court said we can do that. We need more money to pay bills,” he stressed.