By ABUBAKAR YUSUF.
The ascension of Zacheaus Adedeji , a seasoned administrator , technocrat, politician and financial expert to the leadership of leading Revenue House, the Federal Inland Revenue Service FIRS was not only by fortuitous circumstances and natural occurences, but dint of hardwork and scramble for success in life’s sojourn from grass to grace.
This was acknowledged by Nigeria’s President, Bola Ahmed Tinubu that led to his double appointment within months as Special Adviser on Revenue of the Federal government and not long became a substantive Executive Chairman, Federal Inland Revenue Service FIRS after a major reorganisation in the federal agencies.
Zach as he was popularly known became a cynosure of public glare after he was appointed as a Commissioner for Finance, Oyo State at a younger age of 33 years in the late former Governor of Oyo State cabinet , having performed exceptionally well in his academic career graduating with first class degree, a record that was rare untill the appointment of a 32 year old Commissioner for Finance, Dr Olowo Rabiu Onaolapo in Lagos state by Governor Babajide Sanwolu in the last dispensation who also fell into similar academic category, both crowned it with a PHD.
His exceptional performance as Commissioner for Finance in Oyo State exposed him to federal government appointment as President Buhari appointed him as Executive Secretary, Nigeria Sugar Development Council NSDC , reappointed after an exceptional performance in his first term.
He revolutionized and chart a new course for the development of modest sugar policies in line with the best practices and international requirements.
The FIRS boss exceptional performance at his two previous responsibility also attracted the new administration of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to recommend his appointment as Special Adviser on Revenue and later his appointment as the new Executive Chairman, Federal Inland Revenue Service FIRS.
Before his appointment, Zach Adedeji has already rolled out the template of expanding revenue generation in the country through tax reforms, a concerted efforts in line with the mandate of the Presidential committee.
Having seen his foresight, commitment and determination to achieve results, the Nigeria President further appointed him to head the Revenue generating agency of government, The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS).
Adedeji not long in office has set in motion an enabling environment to redouble tax collection and revenue generation of the federal government, so as to consolidate the agency as the main organ funding monthly revenue distribution to Local , State and Federal Government at the monthly Federal Account Allocation Committee (FAAC).
This is doable through a rejigged leadership and improved generation as well as engagements of more experts on tax multiplication and reactivation in the existing tax payment outlets as well as the semi formal and informal sectors.
Already, the new FIRS leadership under Zacheaus Adedeji had granted waivers on Penalities, interests on outstanding liabilities to enable tax payers of all categories redeem subsequent obligations.
This among many numerous reforms will be expected of the new Executive Chairman, FIRS so as to galvanize the revenue base of the federal government with a view to meeting it’s routine and any other obligations.
As you mark additional year at the mantle of leadership of FIRS, no doubt your wealth of experience garnered over the decade will transform the revenue base of the country and translate to self sustenance in other areas of our National Development.
Wishing you a Happy Birthday and many more years of service to your fatherland.
Abubakar Yusuf Writes from Abuja on [email protected].