By Muhammad Hamisu Abdullahi
Kano Internal Revenue Service in collaboration with the state Ministries of Finance and Economic Development and Planning and Budget with support from Partnership to Engage Reform and Learn (PERL) has gathered stakeholders in Zaria, Kaduna State to align the state Medium Term Revenue Target (MTRT) with its Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF).
It intended to set a target for the state 2023 Medium Term Domestic Revenue.
The stakeholders were drawn from all the revenue generating ministries, departments and agencies in the state to include even those from the Office of the state Head of Civil Service. The event proper started on Monday and ended the following day.
While chairing the event during its opening on Monday, the state Head of Civil Service, Alhaji Usman Bala Muhammad, mni, in his welcome address, described revenue target setting and its alignment with MTEF as important tool for domestic revenue mobilisation critical for achieving overall development of the state fiscal space towards financing its necessary expenditure to enable sustainable development.
Alhaji Muhammad, who appreciated officials of the various organisations for the manner they are consistently deploying reforms initiatives towards ensuring increasing revenue base in the state, however noted that the state best performance is not enough in the drive for self-sustenance revenue status, using domestic resource potentials.
“We must certainly need to strive to do more for us to be home and dry,” he emphasized.
The Head of Service further told the gathering of the commitments of the state administration under the leadership of the state governor, Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje to always extend high-level governance and political support for revenue generation, describing it as another key requirement for achieving revenue target by all organisations in the state.
He said the objective of Medium Term Revenue Strategy (MTRS) is to provide a clear vision for the state future tax potentials in order to attain lasting and meaningful tax system reforms to meet its fiscal needs as it is currently in dire need for more revenues which underscore a clear and coherent vision for tax reform with support of partners like PERL.
In his goodwill message, the Special Adviser to the state Governor on Internally Generated Revenue, Alhaji Habibu Sale Mailemo, who is former chairman of Fagge Local Government Area of the state, appreciated the support of all stakeholders, especially development partners for their roles in enhancing revenue services in the state.
He explained that though there were wrong perceptions between KIRS and other agencies in the state, through similar events, the development partners have assisted the state to have a clear direction as far as revenue generation is concerned.
He said the exercise was not a blame game but intended to make the state better and brighter. Speaking, the Permanent Secretary of the state Ministry of Finance and Economic Development, Dr. Lawan Shehu Abdulwahab, reminded the participants that the act of governance entails what people contribute towards ensuring that right things are done to enable the system develop.
He expressed the hope that after the event a strong tax policy would be developed to enable the state to achieve a sustainable development.
He expected honest contributions and reliable projections from the participants. On his part, his counterpart of the Ministry of Planning and Budget, Alhaji Auwalu Sanda, thanked the organisers for helping them to kick start the 2023 annual budget.
He stressed the need for having a specific and reasonable revenue target, explaining that internally generated revenue from the state revenue agency remained erratic, thus making the state to be below some others of the federation. “Let’s set a target the state can achieve.
Considering position of Kano, it needs to do more than what it is doing now. “MDAs need to be aggressive in revenue generation, for example, the state Water Board needs to do more. “MDAs should show a determination in what they are doing,” suggested the Permanent Secretary.
He emphasized: “We need to think big in our efforts at revenue generation.” Alhaji Sanda then commended the state road traffic agency (KAROTA) for a job well done in revenue generation.
He then looked forward to see in the near future that Internally Generated Revenue could pay salaries in the state. He said with the help of PERL, they were becoming more scientific in their approach.
In his goodwill message, PERL’s Facilitation Manger, Malam Auwalu Hamza, raised so many questions in the area of so what, just to encourage the participants to go extra mile in doing the needful to do their best in helping the state to generate more revenue for its sustainable development.
Malam Hamza hammered that putting group plans is not enough but doing more in the extra is what matters. He said civil service was built in the belief that every individual could make a difference, hoping that the event would help in generating ideas in which every- …With PERL’s support body in the state could benefit. Earlier, the State Financial, Transparency, Accountability and Sustainability (SFTAS) Focal Person, Malam Imam Inuwa Gwale had read the objectives of the session as to roll over the state MTRT and harvest inputs for the MTRS communication strategy, training plan and tax policy, with Malama Habiba Njidde, PERL’s Knowledge Management and Communications Adviser giving a declaration of the objectives of the session.
Dr. Mark Abani, a Lead Consultant with PERL made a virtual presentation on ‘Supporting Kano State MTRS,’ where he emphasized the need to identify the state training need assessment and develop its training plan in order to ensure that the MTRS supports the MTRT to enable the state achieve its target revenue.
Also, Mr. Kayode Olanorin, another Consultant with PERL, presented a paper on ‘Communication Strategy for MTRS Document,’ realising that communication remains crucial to the delivery of the document.
Another Consultant with PERL, Mr. Basil Obasi, had his presentation on ‘Revenue Forecasting’ with focus on bottomup approach setting MTRT. Technical Working Groups were designed for achieving the objectives.
The activities of the groups extended to the following day two.
Joining the event on day two, after receiving the Emir of Kano, Alhaji Aminu Ado Bayero, who renewed his driving license at the headquarters of the agency in the state capital on Monday.
The chairman on KIRS, Alhaji Abdulrazak Datti Salihi was not left out in passing a goodwill message during the event. Alhaji Salihi, who hoped to see a lot of changes in the revenue generation in the state as a lot has been discussed, also hoped that the participants would put hand together with his agency in generating more revenue for the state.
He called for synergy among the three key revenue generating organisations in the state; namely his agency, the state Ministry of Finance and Economic Development and that of Planning and Budget.
During the day two, the Director, Ministries, Departments and Agencies at the KIRS, Alhaji Sammani Ibrahim gave a recap of day one.