The Enugu State Government, on Friday, sealed the premises of 16 corporate institutions, including schools, hotels and consulting firms in different parts of Enugu metropolis, over alleged tax evasion.
The Chairman of the State Internal Revenue Service (ES-IRS), Mr Emmanuel Nnamani, disclosed this at his maiden news briefing on the operations of the service.
Nnamani said the organisation decided to embark on the exercise following the alleged refusal by the owners and management of the businesses to respond to government’s repeated reminder letters.
READ ALSO: APC group drags Kano governor to UN over harassment of justices
“We have written to them severally but they thought it was business as usual.
“So, we approached the court, and the court gave us authority to seal the premises,” he said.
The state IRS boss further said that the companies and businesses in Enugu State, since 2015, had not paid taxes, amounting to several millions of naira, to the state.
Nnamani said this was the reason people did not see any reason to pay tax under the current administration.
“Those who pay tax in Enugu State are not up to 10 per cent.
“We are losing huge amounts of money to tax defaulters every month,” he said.
According to him, the current government is determined to provide amenities for the people, using the internally generated revenue that is not forthcoming.
“The government recently flagged off the construction of 71 roads in the state capital, among several others, and we need money to execute all these projects.
“If people do not pay their taxes, where then do we get the required money to execute such people-oriented projects.
“I want our people to understand this and cooperate with us, in the interest of the state,” Nnamani said.
The IRS chairman also said that tax is a contribution by citizens and residents toward the development of society.
He, therefore, urged the people to join hands with the government to develop the state by paying their taxes, regularly.
“I can assure you that at the end of this administration, Enugu State will not be the same again,” Nnamani said.
He further said that the Peter Mbah-led administration had achieved over 200 per cent service delivery in the past seven months of the administration.