Lagos shuts 13 more companies for N140m tax evasion

Lagos state clamps down on serial tax defaulters.

Thirteen more companies have been shut down by the Lagos State Internal Revenue Service, LIRS, for allegedly defaulting to pay over N140 million in company taxes.

The affected companies owed taxes ranging from one to six years, the Head of LIRS Distrain Unit, Folasade Coker-Afolayan, said on Friday.

Lagos state has closed dozens of defaulting companies in the last few weeks as it steps up its tax drive, reputed as the nation’s most aggressive.

Eleven companies were sealed for tax debts of over N181.4 million last week.

Mrs. Coker-Afolayan said on Friday the additional companies were not legally known to the state government, and had been shut down between September 17 and 26.

“It is only the state government that is authorized to unseal these companies after remitting their taxes to government coffers,” she said.

The closures were ordered by the State High Court, and is in accordance with the Personal Income Tax Amendment Act of 2011, she said.

The Act provides that the LIRS could apply to the court for a warrant to close down companies defaulting in tax remittance.

Mrs. Coker- Afolayan described the state-wide company tax enforcement drive as successful and advised taxpayers to cooperate with officials of LIRS.

“It is better for companies to pay their taxes as at when due to avoid any sanction and by extension loss of productivity,” she said.

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