The Lagos State Government, on Thursday, stated that its current Land Use Charge (LUC) Reforms Law, which is remarkably different from the LUC of 2018, has a human face and was enacted with the welfare of Lagosians in mind.
This is as the state has introduced the self-billing method for property owners in the state.
This disclosure was contained in a statement issued by the Lagos State Commissioner for Finance, Dr. Rabiu Olowo while welcoming officials of the Internal Revenue Service, Federal Capital Territory Abuja, who were on a work-study to Lagos.
Olowo revealed that the need to make the Act people-friendly informed the various provisions such as the 40% general relief, a waiver for pensioners, and discount on early payments among others.
The Commissioner, who was represented by Mr. Haruna Ayodiji, Director, Administration, and Human Resources, Ministry of Finance, harped on the need for increased internally generated revenue at all tiers of government, through effective and innovative taxes in order to shore up the dwindling revenue of the government.
According to him, “There is an urgent need to improve the amount of revenue generated internally to provide the government with the much-needed revenue to meet the huge infrastructural deficit. The Land Use Charge Law, which is a property tax, will help in bridging the revenue gap even as it is designed to be people-friendly.’’
Olowo pointed out that the Land Use Charge Law will help in eliminating incidents of multiple taxations while at the same time boosting revenue generation and consolidation through efficient identification of the property, as well as effective collation of data and information on land property in Lagos State.
Also speaking at the meeting, Alhaja Moriliat Ganiyu, Director, Tax and Revenue Department, reiterated that the objective of the LUC was to mitigate against multiple taxations on properties, explaining that the reform was an attempt to improve transparency in the billing process with the introduction of self-billing methods for citizens.
While maintaining that the self-billing will enable property owners to assess their property in order to help to reduce leakages and fraud, she, however, noted that the downside of the 2020 LUC is the “uncooperative and hostile behaviour by the property owners to the enumerators, which hinders perfection in the job.”
Ganiyu frowned at the untoward behaviour of some property owners who deny officials access to their property or provide false and misleading information.
She also noted that the law has enough mechanism to address the complaints and various grievances of property owners. She said that Lagos state has Land Use Charge Assessment Tribunal Appeal for resolution of matters in addition to 10 Call Centres across the state and a dedicated email for LUC complaints.
Mr. Abdulahi Atta, Chairman IRS, who was represented by Mr. Salisu Abubakar of the Department of Tax and Controller Federal Capital Territory IRS, thanked the government for the warm welcome accorded the delegation, adding that the team is in Lagos to understudy the State Land Use Charge Law.
Nairametrics had reported the revocation of the 2018 Land Use Charge by the Lagos State Government in August 2020. While announcing the revocation, the state government said it was reverting to the pre-2018 Land Use Charge.
In the new 2020 Land Use Charge, the state government revealed some new provisions in the Act which include, waiving of penalty for LUC for 2017, 2018, and 2019, exemption of pensioners from paying LUC, reduction of annual charge rates, the reintroduction of 15% discount for early payment and so on.
The @followlasg on Thursday, stated that its Land Use Charge Reforms Law has a human face and was enacted with the welfare of Lagosians in mind and remarkably different from the Land Use Charge of 2018.
Read More: https://t.co/C6VBzj0Ixb @jidesanwoolu @drobafemihamzat @olowo_mpr pic.twitter.com/gihegc8stv
— The Lagos State Govt (@followlasg) November 19, 2020