Private school owners in Anambra State have reacted to the new tax drive in the state saying schools should not be treated like other shops and businesses. This was in reaction to demands by the board of internal revenue service in the state for all schools to register for tax purposes.
Reacting to this demand, the president of proprietors of private schools in the state, Mr Uzochukwu Nwanonyuo, appealed to the Board to differentiate schools from other businesses. He said private schools complement government’s efforts to develop the child and the general educational development of the state.
He said schools owners do not have the benefit of passing on the taxes to customers (parents) as traders would do.
Contributing, another member of the association, Sir Sunny Anekwe, maintained that synergy between them and the Board is cordial and called for more sensitization and enlightenment on what they were expected to do.
In a remark, the Board of Trustee Chairman, of Private Schools Proprietors, Lady Pat Okeke, pledged their support and loyalty to the government.
She assured that they will continue to work with the Ministry of Education so as to produce intelligent and brilliant children.
The proprietors were urged to run a transparent, accountable, value-based and quality education system. The Commissioner for Basic Education, Prof. Kate Omenuga, who gave the directive during an interactive meeting on what was expected of the private schools’ proprietors in terms of tax payment, said both parties needed to be open.
Omenugha commended the school owners for giving Anambra children education that is globally competitive in line with the vision of Gov. Willie Obiano. He however said that they need to add their quota in the development of the state by paying taxes as and when due.
The Managing Director of Anambra State Internal Revenue Service, Dr David Nzekwu, said it had the mandate to work with any organization in moving the state forward. “We recognize the importance of education and see schools as a critical area of disseminating information on revenue to future generations.”
Nzekwu said the proprietors and proprietresses should render annual returns to the Board and enlightened them on personal income and withholding tax.
He advised them to always deduct payee from the salaries of their staff and remit to the Boar.
He explained that every business set up should within six months register with the Board to open account, conduct tax audit and investigate the operations.