President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has appointed Orire Agbaje, a 400-level Economics student, from the University of Ibadan (UI) as a member of the Presidential Committee on Fiscal Policy and Tax Reforms.
Information Nigeria reports that Agbaje, who is the president of the Nigerian Universities Tax Club, was inaugurated alongside other committee members by the President on Tuesday in Abuja.
The statement confirming her appointment by the Presidency via Twitter read: “One of the members of the Presidential Committee on Fiscal Policy and Tax Reforms, inaugurated today by President @officialABAT, is Miss Orire Agbaje. She is a 400-level Economics student at the University of Ibadan, also serving as the President of @ui_taxclub, President of @SEIHUnibadan, and a Nigeria Higher Education Foundation (NHEF) Scholar.”
The committee, chaired by Taiwo Oyedele, Fiscal Policy Partner and Africa Tax Leader at PriceWaterhouseCoopers, has a one-year mandate divided into three main areas: fiscal governance, tax reforms, and growth facilitation.
Comprising tax specialists and important figures from the private sector, the committee’s duty is to align tax policies nationwide to enhance revenue generation.
However, during the inauguration of the Committee, Tinubu expressed his unwavering commitment to breaking the vicious cycle of overreliance on borrowing for public spending and the resulting burden of debt servicing it places on the management of Nigeria’s limited revenues.
He charged the Committee to improve the country’s revenue profile and business environment as the Federal Government moves to achieve an 18% Tax-to-Gross Domestic Product (GDP) ratio within three years.
Tinubu also directed all government ministries and departments to cooperate fully with the committee towards achieving their mandate.
President Tinubu equally informed the Committee members of the significance of their assignment, as his administration carries the burden of expectations from citizens who want their government to make their lives better.
“We cannot blame the people for expecting much from us. To whom much is given, much is expected.
“It is even more so when we campaigned on a promise of a better country anchored on our Renewed Hope Agenda. I have committed myself to use every minute I spend in this office to work to improve the quality of life of our people,” he declared.
Pointing Nigeria’s current international standing in the tax sector, the President said the nation still faces challenges such as ease of tax payment, which lags behind even Africa’s Continental average.
“We aim to transform the tax system to support sustainable development while achieving a minimum of 18% tax-to-GDP ratio within the next three years.
“Without revenue, the government cannot provide adequate social services to the people it is entrusted to serve.
“The Committee, in the first instance, is expected to deliver a schedule of quick reforms that can be implemented within thirty days. Critical reform measures should be recommended within six months, and full implementation will occur within one calendar year,” the President directed.