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ABSTRACT

Taxation remains a veritable instrument for national development. Apart from being a major source of revenue for the government, taxation provides goods and services needed by citizens. Taxation policies can stimulate economic growth and job creation through its impact on investment and capital formulation in the economy. In this respect reforms in the tax system that ensure effectiveness, equity and efficiency are conditions for healthy public revenue. The decision to reform the Nigerian tax system is crucial in order to improve the revenue base for national development and attaining socio-economic goals for taxation. The thesis which adopts the doctrinal approach examines the process that led to the current tax reforms under the Federal Inland Revenue Service (Establishment) Act, 2007 and the reforms initiated by the Act; the impact of the tax reforms under the Act on tax administration at the federal level; and the gap and challenges faced in the implementation of the reforms. The findings of the research are that the reforms in the FIRS have resulted in a review of tax laws, reduced the delay in policy initiations and implementation, creation of a customer friendly tax environment, improvement in staff training and welfare, greater accessibility, review of procedures and processes as well as utilization of information communication technologies. These have positioned the FIRS as a modern and efficient tax administrative agency and have redefined the role of taxation as an important means of generating revenue from non oil revenue sources. The research examines some of the challenges which include persisting cases of corrupt tax officials, centralization of tax administrative agency and the conflicts between the FIRS (Establishment) Act, 2007 and Company Income Tax Act 2011. The self assessment regime which in the past did not function properly, has under the last reforms gained ascendance as the major mode of tax assessment and the uncertainty that hitherto characterized the process has been resolved to a large extent by the FIRS (Self Assessment) Regulation 2011, by setting out processes, procedure and providing standard guidelines for the implementation of the established Self Assessment Regime in support of an efficient tax administration system in Nigeria.

TABLE OF CONTENTS
Title page – – – – – – – – – – i
Declaration – – – – – – – – – – ii
Certification – – – – – – – – – – – iii
Dedication – – – – – – – – – – – iv
Acknowledgment- – – – – – – – – – v
Acknowledgment – – – – – – – – – – vi
Abstract – – – – – – – – – – – vii
Table of Cases – – – – – – – – – – viii
Table of Statutes- – – – – – – – – – xi
List of Abbreviations – – – – – – – – – xii
Table of Contents- – – – – – – – – – xiii
CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION
1.1 Background – – – – – – – – – 1
1.2 Statement of the Problem – – – – – – – 4
1.3 Objectives of the Study – – – – – – – 5
1.4 Scope of the Study – – – – – – – – 6
1.5 Significance/Justification of the Study – – – – – 6
1.6 Research Methodology – – – – – – – 6
1.7 Literature Review – – – – – – – – 7
CHAPTER TWO: DEFINITION AND CONCEPTUAL CLARIFICATIONS OF KEY TERMS
2.1 Definition – – – – – – – – – 13
2.2 Distinction between Tax and Revenue – – – – – 16
2.3 Administrative Reforms – – – – – – – 19
2.4 Objectives of Nigeria Tax System – – – – – – 20
2.4.1 To Promote Fiscal Responsibility and Accountability – – – 20
2.4.2 To Facilitate Economic Growth and Development — – – – 21
2.4.3 To Provide the Government with Stable Resources for the Provision of
Public Good and Services – – – – – – – 21
2.4.4 To Address Inequalities Income Distribution – – – – 21
2.4.5 To Provide Economic Stabilization – – – – – – 22
2.4.6 To Pursue Fairness and Equity – – – – – – 22
2.4.7 To Correct Market Failures or imperfections – – – – 22
2.5 Principles of Nigeria Tax System – – – – – – 23
2.5.1 Simplicity, Certainty and Clarity – – – – – – 23
2.5.2 Flexibility – – – – – – – – – 23
2.5.3 Low Compliance Cost – – – – – – – 24
2.5.4 Low Cost of Administration – – – – – – – 24
2.6 Nigerian Tax System – – – – – – – – 24
2.6.1 Tax Policies – – – – – – – – – 25
2.6.1.1 Rationale for and Purpose of the Policy – – – – – – 26
2.6.2 Tax Laws – – – – – – – – – 28
2.6.3 Tax Administration – – – – – – – – 30
2.7 Nigerian Tax Laws – – – – – – – – 32
CHAPTER THREE: EVALUATION OF FEDERAL INLAND REVENUE SERVICE
3.1 Introduction – – – – – – – – – 34
3.1.1 Establishment and Powers of the Service – – – – – 36
3.1.2 Organizational Re-Structuring – – – – – – 49
3.1.3 Challenges Posed By the Pre 2004 Structure – – – – – 50
3.1.4 The Evolution of Integrated Tax Office and Large Tax Offices – – 51
3.2 Modernization of the Management of Tax Authority in Nigeria. – – 55
3.2.1 Modernization of the FIRS – – – – – – – 56
3.2.2 Changes Brought About By the Modernization – – – – 65
3.3 Problems of Tax Authorities in Nigeria – – – – – 66
3.4 Bridging the Gap between the Tax Payers and Tax Administrators – – 77
3.4.1 Bridging Tax-Compliance Gap – – – – – – 79
3.5 Achieving Voluntary Compliance through Self Assessment – – – 80
3.6 Reforms in the Self Assessment Regime in Nigeria: The Implications
on Tax Payer – – – – – – – – – 82
3.6.1 Legal Basis, Date of Commencement and Scope of the Regulations – – 83
3.6.2 Mode of Filling Self Assessment Returns – — – – – 84
3.6.3 Time for Filling Self Assessment Returns – – – – – 84
3.6.4 Extension of Time for Filling Returns – – – – – – 85
3.6.5 Payment of Self Assessed Tax – – – – – – 86
3.6.6 Administrative Assessment – – – – – – – 92
CHAPTER FOUR: EXAMINATION OF NIGERIAN TAX REFORMS
4.1 Introduction – – – – – – – – – 96
4.2 Background to the Ongoing Tax Reforms – – – – – 96
4.3 Objectives of the Tax Reforms – – – – – – 97
4.4 Necessity for Tax Reforms – – – – – – – 98
4.5 Need for Tax Policy Reforms – – – – – – 98
4.6 Tax Policy Reforms – – – – – – – – 100
4.6.1 Legislative Reforms – – – – – – – – 100
4.6.2 Administrative Reforms – – – – – – – 102
4.6.3 Government – – – – – – – – – 102
4.6.4 International Agencies – – – – – – – 104
4.6.5 Media – – – – – – – — – – 104
4.7 Past Efforts of Tax Reforms – – – – – – – 105
4.7.1 Tax Reforms Pre-2007 – – – – – – – 105
4.7.1.1 1978 Tax Reform – Tax Force on Tax Administration – – – 105
4.7.1.2 1991 Study Group on Nigerian Tax System and Administration – – 106
4.7.1.3 2002 Study Group on Review of Nigerian Tax System – – – 109
4.7.1.4 National Tax Policy – – – – – – – – 110
4.7.1.5 Tax Bills – – – – – – – – – 111
4.7.2 Tax Reforms Post 2007 – – – – – – – 112
4.7.2.1 The Laws Reviewed – – – – – – – – 112
4.7.2.2 Companies Income Tax (Amendment) Act 2004 – – – – 115
4.7.2.3 FIRS Establishment Act 2007 – – – – – – 116
4.7.2.4 Power to Distraint – – – – – – – – 117
4.7.2.5 Establishment of Tax Appeal Tribunal (TAT) – – – – 117
4.7.2.6 Value Added Tax (Amendment) Act 2007 – – – – – 118
4.8 Ongoing Reforms of FIRS – – – – – – – 120
4.8.1 Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) – – – – – 121
4.8.2 An Expansion of Treaty Network – – – – – – – 123
4.9 An Overview of the Tax Reform – – – – – – – 123
CHAPTER FIVE: SUMMARY, RECOMMENDATIONS AND CONCLUSIONS
5.0 Summary – – – – – – – – – 126
5.1 Introduction – – – – – – – – – 126
5.1 Findings – – – – — – – – – 127
5.2 Recommendations – – – – – – – – 131
5.3 Conclusion – – – – – – – – – 133
Bibliography – – – – – – – – – 135

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