A synergy session among all stakeholders in the Property Tax and other Land Revenue matters in Kwara State was held today, Tuesday, 29th June 2021, at the Corporate Head Office of the Kwara State Internal Revenue Service, (KW-IRS).
The meeting which was tagged; “Synergy, Synchronization and Sustainability of Land Business Processes” was targeted at ensuring improved, effective and efficient property tax collection in the State.
Giving her opening remarks at the session, the Executive Chairman, KW-IRS, Shade Omoniyi stressed the importance of Property Tax in revenue mobilization, adding that it is a line of the collection with great potentials.
She stated that the meeting of all relevant MDAs on Property and Lands matters was not to stage a blaming platform but to brainstorm on best ways to handling this important revenue line, which in turn will shore up the revenue base of the State. She reiterated the commitment of the Service in actualizing its mandate through the robust implementation of systems that ease processes and activities of all MDAs in the State.
Omoniyi charged all stakeholders and participants to see the job of revenue drive as the duty & responsibility of all, towards achieving more development for the State, adding that, only with strong collaboration and embracement of automation of all processes of collection, can the huge success being awaited, come to pass.“Let us forget about the past and focus more on what we all can do now, to ensure the goal of the State is accomplished”, she stated.
In her presentation, the Head, Property Tax, KW-IRS, Olanike Wole- Oke, spoke to factors affecting property tax in Kwara State, stating that, the main goal of the session was to identify the loopholes created as a result of lack of synergy and develop strategies that could bring about positive change in the landed property sector of the State for the benefit of all.
She elaborated on the need for synergy of all involved in property tax, that is, the Bureau of Lands, Office of Surveyor-General, Town Planning Authority, Housing and Urban Development, Geographic Information System and Ministry of Justice.
Other issues raised by the Head of Property Tax include; realistic database of properties and their owners, proper street naming and house numbering, accurate transfer of satellite imageries on the systems, effective synchronization of systems for easy interface with relevant MDAs involved in landed property matters, automated bill generation and reporting.
Abayomi Ajiboso, a Manager of the Property Tax Department of KW-IRS, in his presentation titled “tapping the untapped revenue lines of property tax in Kwara State”, highlighted Caveat Emptor, Mortgage and Approval Fees, Document Registration and Search, Capital Gain Tax, Stamp Duties etc, as major areas that need to be tapped into.
Corroborating all earlier submissions on the need gaps in Property Tax drive and collection in the State, Ajiboso, stated that,the only way to effective and improved IGR for the State is synergy and syncronization of all activities.
In their responses, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Works and Transport, TPL Isiaq Oloorukoba and the Director-General Bureau of Land, TPL Bolake Yusuf, expressed their appreciation to KW-IRS for bringing up such a session, stating, it is a good step in the right direction.
TPL Bolakale added that there has been a harmonious working relationship between the Bureau of Lands and KW-IRS. He however noted that the agency is aware of most of the issues raised and reiterated the continuous commitment of all parties involved in ensuring the set goals are achieved.
Contributing to the discussion, the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor and a council member of the ‘Ease of doing Business’, Mallam Rafiu Ajakaye, who was also in attendance, emphasised the need for all to embrace technology as a way to greater development. He added that involvement of the Telecoms companies in making the internet available across the State could further assist data and information synchronization for revenue growth for the State.
Speaking on behalf of the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice of the State, Jawondo Salman, the Permanent Secretary, of the ministry, Musa Idris, identified non-implementation of existing laws as a major hindrance to revenue growth. He noted that the capacity of government to impose use of relevant laws, political wills and proper enforcement are germane for achievement of set goals. ‘It is not enough highlighting problems without proper application of laws and follows up on enforcement processes’, said Idris.
The Head, Building Unit, Bureau of Lands, Yinka Abdullahi, and other principal officers from property tax related agencies hinged issues of low performance in revenue collection from property tax to challenges of compliance and promised to work together more than before, towards realisation of objectives of the AbdulRahman AbdulRazak led administration.
In his closing remarks, the Director, Admin and Operations, KW-IRS, who doubles as Acting Head MDAs, Olatunji Balogun, appreciated all participants for their time and contributions.
Olatunji said, issue of property is germane to the development of any State and it requires a collaborative effort to have an increased revenue generation for the State.
The session had in attendance, other Directors of KW-IRS, Omolara Ojulari and Shehu Abdullahi; the General Manager, Physical Planning Authority, TPL Taiye Mohammed, Deputy Surveyor-General, T.A.Afolayan, Director, Land Services, Esv. Emmanuel Ogundipe, principal officers and staff of all relevant MDAs in the State and staff of KW-IRS.
Corporate Affairs Department, KW-IRS
29th June 2021.