Firm introduces new technology to drive tax compliance 

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Collins Nweze

 

AHEAD of the March 30 deadline for Personal Income Tax (PIT) returns, Taxaide, a tax management and technology firm, has unveiled technological tools aimed at enhancing a more effective tax administration for Nigerians and tax authorities.

Speaking with reporters on Tuesday, Bidemi Olumide, CEO of Taxaide, said the firm, through its technology development subsidiary, Taxtech, produced PITApp® to serve as an aggregator of all PIT obligations and urged all taxable Nigerians to ensure that they meet their PIT obligations before the deadline.

“The 2020 PIT filing season is upon Nigerians and the law requires every taxable person to file their tax returns with the designated revenue agency of the state where they are resident in Nigeria,” he said.

“The deadline for doing this in the leap year 2020 is March 30 and, as part of our work in building a more effective tax management system, we have built the PITApp to simplify the PIT returns filing and remittance process for Nigeria tax residents.”

PIT returns are fileable with the designated revenue agency of each of the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT). The failure by a taxable person to file his or her PIT returns is a punishable offence with fines, and imprisonment where the fines are not paid.

Chief Technology Officer of Taxtech, Onatoye Onakomaiya, said PITApp is  a web-based and mobile application service. “The app is designed to make life easier for Nigerian taxpayers; especially in an increasingly technologically-driven world,” he said. “PITApp saves you time and by reducing resources that would have been spent on undertaking these tasks manually.”

According to Olumide, there are an estimated 900 revenue collecting agencies Federal, State and Local) in the country jostling for the attention of Nigerian taxpayers.

“This is a huge distraction from the core economic activities that should generate the tax in the first place.

“Every taxable person or organisation should focus on its core commercial mandate while leaving the operational aspects of their tax compliance to accredited tax managers. This is the essence of Taxaide; to take care of those distractions. From tax audits management, to payroll management, to PIT management, to corporate income taxes management, to the management of transaction taxes as Value Added Tax, Withholding Tax, etc,” he said.

Also, March 15 is the deadline for organisations that are Personal Data Controllers or Administrators to file their Annual Data Protection Audit Reports with Nigeria’s National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA).

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According to the Nigeria Data Protection Regulation (NDPR), which NITDA released on January 25, last year, the failure to file could attract pecuniary sanctions of up to two per cent  of the global turnover of the errant organisation or N10 million, whichever is higher. Since the release of the NDPR, a significant number of Personal Data Controllers or Administrators have seen reasons to be compliant with the NDPR and avoid the wrath of NITDA.

For the purposes of the NDPR, a Personal Data Controller or Administrator is an organisation that processes the Personal Data of at least 1000 Data Subjects. A Data Subject is both of: (i) a Nigerian, regardless of where he or she lives; and (ii) any person that lives in Nigeria, regardless of where the Personal Data processing activity is to take place.

Taxtech, one of the 27 Data Protection Compliance Organisations (DPCO) appointed by NITDA to assist with ensuring that Personal Data Controllers or Administrators are compliant with the NDPR, in September 2019 started the conversation on a process for the automation of the filing of Data Protection Audit Reports.

“Without automation, it will be almost impossible for Nigeria’s 27 DPCOs to assist the estimated 5 million Data Controllers or Administrators, ensure compliance with the NDPR in 2020,” said Mr. Olumide. “Nigeria’s ability to see that more organisations than not are compliant with the NDPR is an unspoken prerequisite for Nigeria to be adjudged a data protection compliant country.

And that is why we built an electronic Data Protection Audit Platform (iDAP) to ease the data protection audit process for DPCOs. iDAP is an application that allows DPCOs carry out the entire audit process of their clients (Data Controllers and Administrators) seamlessly. Where NITDA allows, the DPCOs can also automatedly file the audit reports with NITDA, thereby giving NITDA the opportunity of standardising, assessing and further simplifying the compliance process.”