…Seeks stronger tie with FIRS
Ahead of its planned National Gaming Conference slated for July 2021, the Management of the National Lottery Regulatory Commission, NLRC, has expressed its readiness to collaborate with the Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS, on all areas of mutual interest in fostering increased revenue generation for the Federal Government.
The Director General of NLRC, Mr. Lanre Gbajabiamila, stated this when he led the Management of the Commission on a courtesy visit to the Executive Chairman of the FIRS, Alhaji Muhammad Mamman Nami.
The NLRC DG noted that with the sustained developmental growth witnessed in the lottery industry, coupled with the ancillary business opportunities therein, it became imperative for the commission to seek collaborations with relevant agencies to complement its regulatory efforts.
“Scope of operations has grown, just as the entire industry is witnessing an astronomical growth. We seek out sister Federal Government agencies relevant in actualizing our mandate for concrete collaborations. We already have ties with Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, National Information Technology Development Agency, NITDA, as well as with anti-graft agencies, namely the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) and Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC,” he said.
“The FIRS will not be isolated as we need your agency for a working synergy of mutual benefit to our respective organizations,” the DG added.
Mr Gbajabiamila who took time to explain the workings of the NLRC to the Management of the FIRS also identified issues of double regulation and double taxation as areas of challenges for the operators of lottery business in Nigeria.
He said that lottery operators contribute percentage of their earnings to good causes in Nigeria, while also paying taxes to both Federal and state governments. He added that it was important for the FIRS to participate in the National Gaming Conference with a view to creating better understanding of these issues.
The Commission, he said, would undertake elaborate public awareness campaign aimed at offering proper guidance to lottery operators and other stakeholders.
In his response, the Executive Chairman of the FIRS, Alhaji Muhammad Nami, expressed delight at the visit. He pledged the support of the FIRS towards a successful National Gaming Conference.
Alh. Nami who noted that taxes were the primary source of revenue to governments all over the world, disclosed that about 60% and 70% of all the funds shared monthly by the Federal Allocation Committee, FAC, among the three tiers of government in Nigeria is generated by the FIRS.
Expressing his appreciation for the visit, Nami said: “We are not taking the visit lightly as it will assist us to meet our target. We are always interested in meeting our critical partners in progress and together we will be able to block all revenue leakages in the country. The visit is very important and appreciated.
The Chairman formally accepted the invitation for the FIRS participation in the National Gaming Conference, and expressed their willingness to continue in other areas of collaborations with the NLRC initiated even before he assumed office.
PHOTO CAPTION: Fourth and Fifth from left are the Director General of the NLRC, Mr. Lanre Gbajabiamila and Alhaji Muhammad Mamman Nami, Executive Chairman of FIRS flanked by the Management Team of NLRC.