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Tax Payment: FIRS to go after skit makers, influencers soon

by Akeem Adeyemi
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Tax Payment: FIRS to go after skit makers, influencers soon

The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) has revealed plans to ensure skit makers, influencers, and digital content creators in Nigeria pay taxes to the Government coffers.

The Special Adviser on Media to the chairman of the FIRS, Dare Adekambi, made this known to newsmen, revealing that social media content creators and influencers constituted a major block of tax evaders.

According to Adekambi, FIRS would first set up a meeting and discuss with the entertainers why they should voluntarily pay taxes, but if the appeal fails, they will move to enforcement.

“They are not paying. Skit makers, influencers and other content creators who are making money using digital platforms need to be paying tax. There is a law in Nigeria that requires everybody who earns income to pay tax. They earn in dollars. Tax is a civic obligation; civil servants are paying, so they also have to pay.

The CAC’s Registrar-General and the FIRS chairman recently discussed how they can work together in bringing them into the tax net. The challenge is how to track them, but we are looking into it,” Adekambi said.

He stressed that the FIRS would meet with content creators and influencers and make them see why they should voluntarily pay tax but “if our friendly approach is taken for granted, then we will go for enforcement,” he added.

Speaking further, Adekambi argued that social media content creators and influencers pay taxes in developed countries, the social media companies also pay taxes, so those who use the platform to make money should also pay taxes to the government.
“If Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and other social media platforms are paying taxes to the government, why would people using those platforms to create content and make money not pay? By the time a committee is set up to look into it, a broad spectrum of activities will be covered.
There is a way the government monitors everything in other climes. One of the cardinal goals of the current FIRS chairman is to leverage technology and data. When you have these, revenue will be predictable and it will be easy for the government to plan,” he said.

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