By Dada Ahmed
Due to measures taken by the Kogi government, more than 200 expatriates are now doing various legitimate businesses in Kogi with ease and paying taxes, an official of the state government says.
In and interview with News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Alhaji Yakubu Oseni, the Executive Chairman, Kogi State Internal Revenue Service (KGIRS), attributed the positive development to the determination of the Alhaji Yahaya Bello-led administration to fight crime and criminality in the state.
‘’As at today, no fewer than 200 expatriates are in the state, doing one legitimate business or the other without any fear of being kidnapped, murdered or any other crime of sort.
‘’The credit goes to the Executive governor of the state, Alhaji Yahaya Bello, who is fighting tooth nail to ensure that no more kidnapping, armed robbery, murder among other crimes that rear their ugly heads few months ago in the state,’’ he said.
According to him, the security in the state had strengthened the determination of people within and outside the state and the country, to engage in business and other social activities.
Oseni expressed delight that the return of peace in the state had also led to increased human activities boosting its economy with the multiplier effect on the revenue profile of the state.
The executive chairman said the revenue generation of the organisation, which stood between N250 million and N300 million monthly in 2015, had increased by about 300 per cent as at 2016 that he took over the leadership of KGIRS.
Oseni said increased revenue was also due to the various measures initiated by his management such as blocking of revenue leakages, employment of professionals as well as fresh graduates to strengthen staff capacity and expand expertise in KGIRS.
He said KGIRS had also established tax education unit to enlighten tax payers on the need to pay tax, as and when due, to enable government develop the state in terms of infrastructure and provide quality services for the welfare of the people.
The executive chairman commended many tax payers for responding promptly to the clarion call from the organisation for them to perform their civic responsibility to the state.
Oseni also lauded the present administration in the state for the judicious use of tax payers’ money to improve infrastructure such as road construction, education, health and security.
NAN reports that Kogi, which shares border with 11 states in the federation, experienced series of crime and criminality, including kidnapping of expatriates, armed robbery and murder few months ago.
However, the state government rose to the occasion, leaving no stone unturned to checkmate the trend by arresting and prosecuting suspected kidnappers, murderers, armed robbers and other criminals.
It went further by destroying houses, cars and other property belonging to known kidnappers in the state while efforts are on to arrest and prosecute more suspects.