The recently concluded Action Plan Executive Retreat held at the Tinapa Resort in Calabar, Cross River State, South-South Nigeria, revealed clearly that state governor, Liyel Imoke, is unhappy with the performance of the state internal Revenue Service, especially her inability to shore up the revenue profile of the state.
Imoke at the retreat took a swipe at the service for the level of corruption that has been its lot in recent times. Particularly, the governor drew the attention of the IRS chairman, Emmanuel Ogar to the proliferation of fake of revenue receipts used by IRS staff to shortchange the state and assured the chairman that in no time something drastic will be done to stem the ugly trend.
Investigations by calitown.com have revealed that the governor may be up against a syndicate in the IRS long steeped in the art of shortchanging the state. In the motor licensing unit of the IRS for instance, the state may have lost a huge amount of money owing to the sharp practices that have even resulted in capital flight from the state to neighbouring states. To renew a driver’s license, the syndicate charges between N29, 000 to N35, 000, as against N12, 000 as revealed by the IRS chairman at the retreat and that is not all.
For operators of the ‘Keke Napep’, the syndicate charges between N15, 000 to N18, 000 to register one. In neighbouring Akwa Ibom state, the registration charge is N8, 000. Operators of this mode of transportation have in their best interest resorted to registering in Akwa Ibom and thereafter operating in Calabar. The difference in the amount payable in Calabar and Uyo is the reason for the mass exodus to Akwa Ibom state, and while Akwa Ibom state smiles to the bank, the IRS in CRS is pointing accusing fingers at the wrong places.
It remains to be seen if the governor will be able to wipe out this sleeze.
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