The Federal Government of Nigeria has overruled the introduction of a 5 percent taxation on mobile phone calls and data – a tax which was earlier proposed by the Minister of Finance, Hajiya Zainab Ahmed.
Professor Isa Pantami, the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, made this known in Abuja during the inauguration of a committee that will review the tax policy.
Professor Pantani said he was not in support of the policy and also advised that the President suspends it due to the effects it would have on the digital economy.
According to Pantami, the introduction of excise duty in the telecommunication industry would only thwart the successes that the communication industry has already made.
Pantami also added that the Information Communication Technology (ICT) sector is already surrounded with multiple taxations both at the federal and state level and an addition of another one will be a great burden.
He further revealed that there are more than 41 taxes that telecommunication and ICT companies are paying, and he stressed that it would be unfair to subject them to payment of excise duty.
A Presidential committee on the review of the excise duty in the digital economy has been inaugurated by the federal government.
The committee to review the policy has Professor Pantami as chairman and the Minister of Finance, Hajiya Zainab Ahmed as a member.
Other members of the committee are: the Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Professor Umar Danbatta, the Executive Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service(FIRS), Muhammad Nami and representatives of the telecommunication industries.