elamahBENIN CITY – Worried by the incessant extortion of monies from unsuspecting members of the public, the Joint Tax Board (JTB) has banned all forms of sales of emblems and stickers to motorist, including heavy duty trucks and vehicles nation wide.
To this end, the JTB warned that on no account should any individual, group or agents collect any levy from motorists under the guise of collecting tolls/levies on behalf of the government.
A statement signed by the Secretary, Joint Tax Board, M.L Abubakar, described such activities as embarrassment, to the general public as well as harassment. Molestation to road users.
The statement pointed out that such illegal activities do not only constitute nuisance,  but an embarrassment to the tax authorities at all levels of government, as well as the general public at large.
It observed that some government officials/agents were also involved in the sale of motor vehicle emblem/stickers for the purpose of generating revenue.
According to the statement, “White this may appear as genuine, it should be noted that the practice is not supported under the tax laws.
It said that a new consolidated emblem has been designed for use across the country, adding that the emblem is to be issued ‘free of any charge’ to vehicle owners nationwide.
This, to the statement noted after fulfilling all payment of road taxes to the tax authorities, including states and the federal capital.
The new emblem the statement said will serve as a clearance for the payment of vehicle registration/ other fees, adding that it would be issued annually.
The statement further said that any form of harassment/intimidation by individuals or groups regarding payment for emblems/stickers other than the approved should be reported to the nearest police station, police post, tax offices or other law enforcement agencies.
It warned that any violation of the law would be sanctioned according to the extant laws.
The JTB however advised all associations, unions and clubs issuing and selling emblems/stickers to motorists in view of collecting dues from members to seek other lawful means of carrying out such activities.
Reiterating the board’s commitment to improving the tax system in the country, the statement said, “The JTB is not unmindful of the need for the states and local governments to inwardly increase their internally generated revenue, but this should be balanced with the need to ensure there is sanity, professionalism and proper application of tax laws in doing so”.
It however encouraged the three tiers of government to adequately harness all available/approved sources of revenue without resorting to sales of items like emblems/stickers to taxpayers.