By Adedapo Adesanya
No fewer than 16 companies have been sealed by officials of the Lagos State Internal Revenue Service (LIRS) for allegedly not remitting consumption tax of N126.19 million to the state government.
The Director of Legal Services at LIRS, Mr Seyi Alade, said in Lagos on Friday that the affected companies’ tax liabilities were from 2014 to 2016.
Mr Alade, during an LIRS state-wide tax law enforcement exercise, noted that the organisations were audited for the periods and from the probe, it was discovered that they have not made the payments to the state government.
According to him, the 16 firms have been closed down and prohibited from operation until they pay the taxes for the period under review.
“The affected companies failed to pay the established liabilities despite the long period of time the agency gave them to regularise their tax status,’’ he said.
He also noted that four of companies that admitted their tax liabilities made their payments and an additional payment of N100,000 each as distress cost to LIRS.
The Service’s Legal Director called on companies and taxpayers in the state to update their tax payments and obligations to avert disruption of their operations and additional distress cost.
He also said that LIRS had sent several notices to the affected companies before embarking on an enforcement exercise.
“Before LIRS embarks on such exercise, it must have sent at least two letter of notices to the management of the affected firms reminding them of their tax liabilities.
“The Demand Notice expiration is 30 days, while the Letter of Intention expires seven days after issuance.
“So, before now both the demand notice letter and the letter of intention have been sent to the management of the companies which they failed to act on,” he said.
Mr Alade further said that the LIRS enforcement team had been repositioned to effectively track companies and individuals who evaded tax payments in the state.
He appealed to residents in the state to cooperate with the government by filling their tax returns and to promptly pay their assessed taxes.
According to him, the LIRS has made tax compliance very easy for the taxpayers through its recent launch of the Electronic Tax platform.
He then urged taxpayers to make use of this platform for their comfort and ease of compliance with their various tax obligations.
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