The Bayelsa State government is exploring means of increasing its Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) to make up for the low allocation it gets from the Federal Government.
Low level of industrial or commercial activities within the state has affected its IGR. It has been very low and has greatly impeded the rate of development in the state, the state government says.
The Deputy Governor, Rear Admiral John Jonah (rtd), told reporters that the state had already started taking some steps to ensure that the IGR was boosted.
“One of the steps we have taken is that we have contacted those that have been very successful in increasing their IGR like Lagos State and others.
“You may know that Lagos is the only state in the country that doesn’t need FAAC (Federation Allocation Account).
“What they have told us is to use consultants which we are using now.
“The Special Adviser to the Governor on Treasury will explain further but just be informed that by this time next year our Internally Generated Revenue drive will be cashless and there will be no way anybody will be able to defraud the tax system.
“Let us all account for whatever is coming in and we are expecting a reasonable increase by that system that we are about to start,” he stated.
The Special Adviser to the Governor of Treasury, Mr Timipre Seipulu, while explaining the steps that have been taken to boost the IGR of the state said “the cost of collection of IGR in the state is a function of the amount of IGR generated.
“When we came in we ensured that even in the formal sector all collections are going to be made through the internet platform.
So when you go and pay all collections will show up on the internet platform. Anybody can access the platform.
“The governor can access it, everyone can access it for transparency,” he said.
He told reporters that interswitch, which performs financial transactions for most of the banking sector, had been engaged to handle the process.
“What they do is that we pay them commission for maintaining the platform and we also give what they call cost of collection to the ministries and agencies that assist us in generating revenues because for instance if the ministry of transport has helped to generate revenue we believe that a portion of it should be given to the ministry.
“It could be six per cent or seven per cent to enable them carry out those activities that will help us generate revenue in the future.
“That is what is called cost of collection. So if the revenue goes up the cost of collection also goes up,” he added.