As part of the measure to institute a new culture of paying tax in the state, the Oyo State Board of Internal Revenue (OYBIR) has said it will soon begin the collection of N10 daily tax from traders and various operators in the informal sector.
The amount, which builds up to N3,000 annual tax, is to be collected by trained officials of the agency with the use of Point of Sales (POS) machines.
At a sensitisation and tax collection parley in various markets yesterday, top officials of the OYBIR, led by its Chairman, Mr. Bicci Alli, demonstrated to market leaders how to pay their tax with ease.
In the new payment mode, market leaders will pay their tax to authorised tax collectors in the presence of the traders and market leaders.
During the tour, market leaders received the tax officials with delight and assured them of their readiness to comply with the government directive since the money is affordable.
The market toured include the popular Ago-Ilorin Market in Mokola, Ibadan, where the Iyaloja, Mrs Feyisara Bayo-Azeez, and other market leaders received the revenue collectors and paid her dues to show her compliance.
At the Agbaja Market in Agbeni, Ibadan, the Acting Chairman of the traders’ association, Mr Samuel Orokunle, said the traders had been waiting for the government to begin the new tax collection regime.
He said the traders understood the fact that the government alone cannot handle the development of the state without the cooperation of the residents.
On the purpose of the sensitisation and tax drive, Alli said: “We are working towards improving a structure that collects money and builds a culture of tax payment in the state. Our people have been paying taxes before now; it’s not new. But somewhere along the line, we lost it. The essence of the exercise is first and foremost to build the culture of tax payment and make it sustainable.
“It is going to be beyond the present administration and beyond anyone. That is what we mean by cultural change.
“Two, it is also to put in place a structure to collect these funds seamlessly. Oyo State, and Ibadan in particular, has one of the largest informal sectors in Nigeria, in West Africa. We are talking about millions of people who are involved in one trade or the other, and not in the formal sector.
“And if you look at it, if about two or three millions of these people contribute N3,000 on a yearly basis, you can imagine how much money that would be and to what extent that will assist the state to rely less on the allocation from the Federal Government, which you and I know keeps dwindling. We cannot continue to rely on that.