Tax evasion: Reps summon trade ministry, over MTN ₦2.6trn naira waiver

Tax Evasion: Reps Summon Trade Ministry, Over MTN ₦2.6trn Naira Waiver

 

The Nigerian House of Representatives Committee on Public Accounts has committed to ensuring that the 2.6 trillion naira capital allowances given to MTN Nigeria by the Federal Ministry of Trade and Industry are properly accounted for.

While speaking on Tuesday at the resumed investigative hearing into the audit queries issued by the Auditor General of the Federation on tax evasion, Chairman of the Committee, Oluwole Oke, revealed that documents relating to the 2.6 trillion naira capital allowances were allegedly forged.

The invitation extended to MTN over tax evasion allegations was ignored, according to the Committee, and the Auditor General’s report indicated that the Federal Inland Revenue Service valued some telecommunications company dealings without certificates and evidence of capital allowance meant to be issued by the Federal Ministry of Trade and Industry.

The Chairman of the Committee insisted that Nigerians had a right to know the consequences of MTN receiving a 2.6 trillion naira tax waiver certificate at the expense of the country’s economy.

Yemisi Adeleye, General Manager, MTN Group, who represented the telecommunications company at the hearing, stated that it had submitted all relevant documents issued by the Federal Ministry of Trade and Industry reflecting the value of the 2.6 trillion naira tax waiver.

Adeleye went on to say that the allowances were granted by the Federal Ministry of Trade and Industry and the Federal Inland Revenue Service using various supporting documents.

The Committee rejected the company’s presentation and vowed to investigate whether the involvement of some Ministry officials was professional and patriotic, emphasizing that the parliament cannot allow abuse of the country’s laws by people whose salaries and allowances were appropriated to close such gaps.

The committee requested that all officials from the Federal Ministry of Trade and Industry and the Federal Inland Revenue Service appear before it with inspection details and tax records covering the periods under review from both MTN and FIRS for further legislative action.

 

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