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Buhari Extends VAIDS Deadline To June 30

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President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the extension of the Voluntary Assets and Income Declaration Scheme (VAIDS) to June 30.
The approval for the extension of the deadline is contained in a statement issued by the President’s Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr Femi Adesina, in Abuja on Wednesday.
According to the statement, the short extension after the original March 31 date is based on the appeals of professional bodies and individual taxpayers.
The statement, however, maintained that no further extension of time will be approved after June 30.
It stated that a new date was also given, based on the conviction of the Ministry of Finance that the overall objective to increase compliance will be attained, and additional revenue will accrue.
It said that a Fresh Executive Order would be made to give legal backing to the new timeline.
“For a nation of people who are competitive and driven, it is not a pride that we are the lowest performer in tax to GDP, not just in Africa, but in the world.
“Nigeria’s growth needs are such that every Nigerian must do his duty to his nation, to his neighbour, and to himself.
“Hiding monies overseas, evading taxes by manipulation, and other unwholesome practices, have never developed a country, and for Nigeria to attain her true potential, these must stop,’’ President Buhari was quoted as saying in the statement.
The President urged Nigerian companies and individuals to join government in the rebuilding mission, “and do the right thing by taking this window of extension to regularise.”
He added that the right thing may not be convenient or comfortable, “but in the long run, we will all have a nation we can be proud of.”
President Buhari further urged tax authorities to use the extension window to perfect plans to prosecute those who fail to regularize their tax status.
VAIDS is one of the key policies being used by the Federal Government to reposition the Nigerian economy and correct inherited underdevelopment.
The country has one of the lowest tax collection rates in the world at just six per cent of GDP. This was partially a function of the reliance on oil that saw us abandon the historical revenue collection systems and switch to a culture of sharing resources, rather than generating them.
President Buhari had in 2017 inaugurated the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP), and the VAIDS tax amnesty is first in the series of reforms that will transform our tax system and provide sustainable predictable funding for all tiers of government.
Tax revenues will ensure that public infrastructure is provided, and public services are funded to improve the lives of the people.

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Petrol Supply Fell By 23.88% In July, NNPC Confirms

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The volume of petrol supplied in the country declined by 23.88 per cent in July to 1.02 billion litres, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has conffirmed.
The NNPC said the 1.02 billion litres translated to 32.95 million litres per day, down from 44.62 million litres per day in June, when 1.34 billion litres were supplied.
Data obtained from the corporation, yesterday, showed that 0.95 billion litres (30.67 million litres/day) were supplied in May and 0.94 billion litres (31.37 million litres/day) in April.
The Federal Government imposed a lockdown on the Federal Capital Territory, Lagos and Ogun states on March 30 but a gradual easing of the lockdown began on May 4.
In March and February, the volume of petrol supplied stood at 1.73 billion (59.72 million litres/day), up from 1.20 billion litres in January (38.68 million litres/day).
“The corporation has continued to diligently monitor the daily stock of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) to achieve smooth distribution of petroleum products and zero fuel queue across the nation,” the NNPC said in its latest monthly report.
In a recent report, Agusto & Co, had noted that the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on economic activities in the country resulted in a decline in the consumption of petroleum products.
The report said, “Agusto & Co. expects the consumption of petroleum products, particularly PMS and Aviation Turbine Kerosene, to decline to 27.2 billion litres in 2020 given the severely restricted travel and transportation activities during the second and third quarters of the year.
“This is expected to translate to a decline in revenue to N4.3trillion in 2020.”
Nigeria, Africa’s largest oil producer, relies largely on importation for petrol and other refined products as its refineries have remained in a state of disrepair for many years.
The NNPC has, until recently, been the sole importer of petrol into the country for more than two years, after private oil marketers stopped importing the commodity due to crude price fluctuations, among other issues.
The refineries, located in Port Harcourt, Rivers State; Kaduna, Kaduna State; and Warri, Delta State; have a combined installed capacity of 445,000 barrels per day but have continued to operate far below the installed capacity.

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UNIPORT Business Operators Lament  Low Patronage

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The business operators within the University of Port Harcourt environment have lamented over the downturn in their businesses since the Covid-19 lockdown due to the closure of the university.
Some of the business operators who spoke to The Tide in a chat said the turn- over in their businesses have gone so low that they can hardly meet up with their  various responsibilities.
A taxi driver in the area, Mr. Vincent Nwadike said passengers are very few, unlike before when the school was in session.
“As we speak now, I can hardly go home with N1500 as my daily return, unlike before when I make between N7,000 to N8,000 as return in a day.
“ Now tell me how I can meet up to take care of my family with this meagre amount. Let them reopen the university as they have opened markets and other places,” he said.
Also speaking on the issue, a bus shuttle operator that operates from Abuja campus to Choba junction, who gave his name as Awizar decried the pace of business in the area since the closure of the university.
“We are just suffering here now, before the university was closed, I use to go home with at least N10,000 to N15,000 as daily returns, but now I can hardly see N3,000.
“Federal Government should try and re-open the university, so that life can come back to normalcy here. They have been having political rallies with crowd, and markets and other places have been opened.
“Infact l am considering relocating to another route, I cannot continue this way. ASUU is threatening strike, and university is still closed, infact when will the system be stable to do business”, Awizer queried.
Meanwhile, one of the Shawama shop owners in the area, Victor Iheme has urged the government to re-open the university and honour the agreement it reached with ASUU so as to ensure peace in the system.
He said that patronage to his business has gone so low, pointing out that most of his customers are students and that since they are away, the remnants of patronage was so low.

 

By: Corlins Walter

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Rotary Club Harps On Skills Acquisition

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The Rotary International District 9141 has urged women to live up to their calling as mothers and acquire some entrepreneurial skills so as to start up their own businesses.
The District Secretary,  Rotarian Izuora Okafor gave the advice at the graduation ceremony of 100 women from Police Officers Wives Association (LAPOWA), who have completed a one week skill acquisition and capacity building for women in Port Harcourt.
He urged women to use this opportunity and get what they need, so as to be financiallyindependent.
According to him, women should live up to their calling as mothers and acquire some entrepreneurial skills, saying empowered mothers take better care of their families.
Okafor further charged the women to go out there and use these skills to better themselves and families.
He noted that Rotary Club believes that society cannot be better if small economics are not empowered.
“Economic and community development is part of the area of focus of Rotary Club. This is exactly what makes rotary happy to make impact and we believe that it has been done today”, he said.
He also encouraged individuals and organisations to create impact in the society, adding that a decision is what it takes to train somebody.
In her address, the Chairperson of LAPOWA, Mrs Lengkat Joseph Mukan  said there was the need for women to seize every opportunity to assert their financial independence through skills acquisition.
She advised women not to be discouraged in anything they do as they had gone through tough times in the time past.
Mukan however, encouraged women to keep pushing forward until they meet up with their expectations and also deliver to the society.
She commended Rotary Club for their good gestures towards empowering the wives of Late Police Officers, praying that God will bless them.
She restated the need for women to embrace entrepreneurship and utilize the opportunity provided to them through the skills acquisition and capacity building for Women.
According to her,  POWA will continue to support them, while calling on other organisations to boost their capacity.
Also speaking  one of the beneficiaries Chinyere Onu thanked Rotarians for empowering them in different capacities.
Adding that they will put what has been taught to practice and will also in turn impact the public.
The women were trained in cosmology,  Catering and hair dressing.

 

By: Iragunima Benice

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