AN APPRAISAL OF REVENUE GENERATION AND COLLECTION IN NIGERIA
It has long been evident that personal income tax in Nigeria has remained the most unsatisfactory, disappointing and problematic of all the taxes in the tax system today. This is in spite of the fact that tax reforms has recently been a key element in economic reform which the country had undergone. It is therefore felt that personal income taxation in Nigeria requires radical handling to ensure that a large chunk of the taxable population does not escape tax.
STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The assessment and collection of personal income tax from taxable person have been difficult in this country in spite of the tax laws and reforms in place. There is apathy not only on the part of the uneducated but also the educated. Having suggested that tax collection is one of the fundamental problems in income tax administration, the question then is how can this problem be surmounted? This study therefore, is an attempt to examine the problems of tax collection and administration in our tax system and also proffer suggestions for improvement.
The instrument of investigation that will be us in this study will come from primary sources of data such of data such as personal interview, and questionnaires. Secondary source of data will also be used, this include, text books, journals and other related materials on this topic.
Generation of tax revenue from the private sector, especially from the self-employed people has always posed a problem. Millions of Naira has been lost due to prevalence of tax evasion and avoidance among the self-employed people. Consequently, taxation cannot be used as a major instrument for revenue generation and key to sustainable economic development, because this hinders the realization of fiscal objectives.
Every year billions of naira are lost because of tax evasion and avoidance by the self-employed people (Ndulu,2003). Both the federal and state government have applied various measures to solve this problem but to no avail the question is; why is tax evasion and avoidance prevalent among the self- employed persons?
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
In a bid to boost revenue generation and collection through tax from private sector, especially from the self- employed people, a lot of tax laws have been made and relevant tax authorities, collectors, and tax contractors have also been put in place to ensure effective tax collection and administration.
But in spite of all this, there have been a prevalent problem of tax avoidance and evasion among the self-employed persons. This study tends to reveal the cause of this problem and the challenges of tax administration in private sector, especially the self-employed persons.
1.3 OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY
The general objective of this study is to examine the nature and extent of the threat posed by personal income tax generation to the socio-economic development of the nation. The study equally will be dealing specifically with the following;
(a) To examine how decline in tax morality by self-employed persons have encouraged tax evasion
(b) To determine the extent to which the nature of tax administration in Enugu has contributed to the problems of personal income tax generation
(c) To find out how the absence of strong deterrent punishment has contributed to the problem.