By NewsCritic Reporters
The newly sworn in Abia State Commissioner for Finance, Dr Aham Uko has promised to undertake reforms that will ensure that all revenue leakages are plugged to ensure that enough fund is generated to build critical infrastructure and pay workers’ salaries.
While speaking to journalists at his country home in Umuahia, Dr Uko said he will do his best to ensure that the issues of outstanding salaries and pensions arrears are resolved. Adding that he will carry out the necessary reforms to weed out imaginary pensioners from the payroll in line with the vision of the Abia State government led by Dr Okezie Ikpeazu.
He disclosed that the state account is going to be centralised into a treasury single account, while the Board of Internal Revenue will be saddled with the responsibility to collect revenue. He said that the overall objective is to make sure the system works better.
Dr Uko said there is going to be genuine change as he will not compromise in the discharge of his duties. Said he, “I will not compromise because we must do what is right. We must make sure that all revenue due to the government will be collected and individuals stopped from collecting the money. Trade unions will be stopped from printing revenue receipts and encourage direct payment and discourage multiple taxation”.
The Finance commissioner warned that the era of financial leakages will end while more people will be brought into the tax net to shore up revenue generation of the state. Uko noted that the government is seriously addressing the issue of infrastructure to encourage people and businesses to pay taxes.
On some government parastatals and Agencies that are unable to pay workers’ salaries, the Finance Commissioner said he is going to look at the circumstances surrounding them to make them more effective, and also ensure that they get what is due to them.