The Presidency, may have authorised the
Revenue Mobilisation, Allocation and Fiscal Commission, RMAFC, to
constitute an audit panel to probe the accounts of all 23 banks in
Nigeria, following allegations of non-remittance of taxes collected,
among other defaults.
Reports say the Federal Government is
expected to rake in about N3.5 billion at the end of the probe, which
already has 10 International Auditing Firms, hired for the exercise.
It was gathered that records available,
showed that most of the Commercial Banks were not paying proper taxes to
the government, and are also involved in a number of shady
transactions, which have denied the government some revenue.
Though most bank headquarters have
remained busy, an insider said most of the management teams of the banks
had remained edgy, over what might be the outcome of the probe.
“Some of the ongoing investigations of
government functionaries by the EFCC, is said to have identified most of
the banks with some unwholesome activities, leading to the cover up of
some illicit deals by the indicted officials. So, the sector is under
our searchlight,” a top official disclosed
The RMAFC official alleged that the
exercise, covering July 2012, to December 2015 period, is to unravel, if
any of the actual duties and taxes that the banks had collected from
their customers, but refused to remit to the government coffers.
It was also learnt that the Audit Firms had a period of six months, to submit their report to the Federal Government.
It would be recalled, that the Federal
Inland Revenue Services, FIRS, boss, Babatunde Fowler, had in August
2016, alleged that some of the revenues from taxes, levies, and duties,
supposedly collected by banks for all the revenue agencies, including
the Nigeria Customs Service, NCS, and the Department of Petroleum
Resources, DPR, were usually not up to projection.
A Presidency source justifying the
exercise, said this is not new to the bankers, as similar exercise was
carried out between January 2008 and June 2012.
It was said to have revealed that the
banks had failed to remit about N12.5 billion, being outstanding taxes
and duties collected on behalf of the revenue collecting agencies.