From Isaac Anumihe, Abuja
The Federal Government has warned State Governments against fraudsters who promise governors that they can increase revenue allocation to their states at a negotiated percentage.
The Chairman of Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC), Engineer Elias Mbam, emphasised in a statement that revenue allocation to states and local governments is based on subsisting law and cannot be changed or increased by anybody.
He added that those who do so are criminals and should be treated as such. Mbam disclosed that the Commission is currently carrying out a nationwide sensitisation and advocacy meetings with various stakeholders on the Revenue Allocation Formula (RAF) review, advising the states and local governments not to carry out any business with any person claiming to be representing the Commission in any form without a written and confirmed letter personally signed by the chairman of the Commission.
Recall that since August 24, when the Commission announced its willingness to commence the review of the existing revenue formula, most states are making surreptitious moves to be favoured by the Commission, a situation that has created the activities of fraudsters.
Earlier, the Commission has stated the consideration for the review.
‘The last general review of the Revenue Allocation Formula was carried out over 28 years ago (1992).
‘The political structure of the country has since changed with the creation of six additional states in 1996, which brought the number of states to 36. Correspondingly, the number of local governments also increased from 589 to 774.
‘There have been some considerable changes arising from the policy reforms that altered the relative share of responsibilities of the various tiers of government including the controversies over funding of primary education, primary health care and inadequate/decaying infrastructure and heightened widespread internal security challenges across the country.’
Others are: Ecological challenges like global warming, desertification, flooding and population explosion;
the inability of the current vertical formula to adequately address the apparent mismatch between statutorily assigned functions and tax powers of each of the three levels of government and agitation for a review by various interest groups including states and local governments.
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