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Oyo State To Deepen IGR Without Increased Taxation, As Alaafin Woos Dangote For Investments

The Oasis Reporters

August 6, 2019

From left: Dangote Group GED, Chief Devakuma Edwin, Alaafin of Oyo (in between two queens and Alh. Aliko Dangote.

Oyo State Government is clearly showing creativity in its drive to deepen it’s Internally Generated Revenue, IGR and has therefore assured the people of the State that the present administration would not increase tax on small and medium scale enterprises.

The Chairman, Oyo State Board of Internal Revenue, Aremo John Adeleke, stated this in a chat with newsmen at his office in Ibadan, adding that the State would rather look into areas that were not captured in the State’s tax net to improve Internally Generated Revenue.

Adeleke said the plans of Governor Seyi Makinde’s government is to build and nurture the growth of SMEs in the State and not to burden them with heavy tax that could drive them out of business.

He said: “It is in line with the promise of Governor Seyi Makinde to empower small scale businesses in the State to propel growth in our economy.

Oyo State Governor, Engr. Seyi Makinde.

“As he works assiduously to attract foreign and domestic investments to the State, he is also working to establish and sustain small and medium scale industries in Oyo State.

“So the idea of tax increment on businesses is not even to be discussed here.

“We will rather nurture them to grow and be self-sustaining than to over-burden them with tax.

“The government nonetheless expects all SMEs to comply with all extant tax laws, especially the ones on personal assessment of business proprietors, withholding tax and VAT payable to the State.”

Aremo Adeleke enjoined commercial vehicle owners and drivers as well as motorcycle riders and owners to collect necessary documents from approved agencies and tax stations under Oyo State internal Revenue Services instead of doing it in neighbouring States.

He said: “We assure everyone of quick turnaround time of registering or renewing vehicle documents.

“We also promise all our patrons quick availability of number plates for all categories of vehicles.”

Adeleke used the occasion to call on staffers of the board of internal revenue to be quick, responsive and work with utmost integrity and professionalism, which he said was the best way to support the present administration in its drive for improved IGR.

In another development, one of the foremost monarchs in the state, Alaafin Of Oyo was reported to have gone to meet Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote asking for business investments in Oyo State.

It would be recalled that the Alaafin, upon being made Pro Chancellor of the then newly established University of Sokoto at inception, contacted leading south west business moguls and players in the national economy to donate generously into the endowment fund for the infrastructural development of the new University that took off temporarily in the premises of a secondary school. In return, he got placements for education hungry Oyo candidates in University of Sokoto, now renamed Usman Dan Fodio University.

Coming out of the stagnation in the former APC induced regime where salaries were owed civil servants for months on end and the State became debt ridden, the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, has appealed to the President of Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote, to set up viable companies in Oyo kingdom, as he is doing across the country.

The Alaafin lauded Dangote for employing thousands of Nigerian youths, noting that the nation will witness real growth and development when able bodied youths are gainfully employed, which is in tandem with what the vision of State governor, Seyi Makinde is.

Acting as an ambassador plenipotentiary for the betterment of his State who is in support of the new PDP administration, the paramount ruler expressed his vision last weekend during a meeting with the Management of Dangote Group in Lagos.

Dangote assured the Alaafin of his readiness to bring investments to the ancient town by exploring the agricultural potentials of the area to help reduce youth unemployment and vulnerability of women.

He promised to mandate the management of Aliko Dangote Foundation to look into social welfare projects it could undertake for the benefit of the people of Oyo.

Dangote said all hands should be on deck now more than ever before for job creation in view of the growing insecurity in the land, adding that joblessness is a major factor breeding criminal elements.
He added: “If we must enjoy what we have, we must be secured.

“The security of lives and property is not that of government alone, we all have a part to play.

“The whole thing still has to do with adequate funding.”

The business icon told the Alaafin that his Foundation would put up a team to study the situation and come up with projects that could be undertaken in Oyo that would have positive impact on the youths and vulnerable women.

Earlier, the Alaafin had told his hosts that he came because of the concern for growing youth unemployment in his domain in particular and the nation in general, saying that he needed to be assisted to create jobs for the youths.

Oba Adeyemi pointed out that Dangote is a phenomenon in Nigeria and his companies are noted for job opportunities across the country and pleaded that the company should help look into areas where the Alaafin palace can partner with Dangote Group for mutual business relationship.

He explained that Oyo is rich in agriculture and urged the company to come and tap into the agriculture potentials of the town to the benefit of the two parties adding that the agricultural sector has potential for job creation and food security.

The Alaafin and his entourage were received by Dangote at the Ikoyi global headquarters of the conglomerate, together with the Group Executive Director of the Company, Chief Devakuma Edwin, who told the monarch how the company had been contributing to the engagement of youths in parts of the country through the Dangote Youth Rice Farm project.

Edwin then introduced the Alaafin to the management of Dangote Rice and assured that the team would take a study of Oyo town with a view to replicating the youth rice farm project, which had earlier been introduced in neighbouring Iseyin, also in Oyo State, so as to create jobs for the teeming graduates.

Edwin explained that the Dangote Youth Rice farm project is an out-grower scheme where the company would provide seedlings, fertilizer, chemicals and other input to the youth farmers and upon harvest buy back the paddy rice from them at the prevailing market rate and then process for consumption.

The GED regretted the growing youth unemployment, describing it as a serious issue that should be addressed quickly.
He lamented that many youths have taken to crime due frustration arising from joblessness.

Edwin said: “A situation where a brilliant child could not go to school because the parents are not paid salaries is very frustrating both to the child and the parents.

“A situation where others struggled to go to school and graduated only to be jobless could be very frustrating too.

“All these are what cascade to social malaise like terrorism, banditry, kidnapping and other crimes because if the youths can get a job to do, they just would have to channel their energy towards a direction.

“This is just one of the reasons we started the youth rice farm projects.”

Additional Reporting: Newsbreak NG

Greg Abolo

Blogger at The Oasis Reporters.

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