The Hotel Owners Forum Abuja (HOFA) has called on President Bola Tinubu and Abuja Metropolitan Area Council (AMAC) to find a way to harmonise taxes and regulate the hospitality industry and boost revenue generation for both government and Hotels.
The President of HOFA, Ouwafunmilayo Kazeem Thursday in Abuja stated that hotels used to pay about 29 different taxes, but with the Memorandum of Understanding signed with AMAC, the taxes were reduced to nine.
They include Radio and TV License, Sign Post, Liquor License, Mobile Advert, Environmental Sanitation and Tenement Rate.
Others are Food Handlers Test, Premises Inspection, and Food Handling Inspection and Certification.
Kazeem said that payment of taxes was not an issue for members of HOFA as they are law abiding citizens, adding that multiple taxation from different government agencies is negatively affecting the hospitality industry.
“We have different government agencies coming to collect the same type of taxes. For example, AMAC and Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) on waste disposal and recently Public Health also came with taxes on food handling tests and water.
“Each agency is claiming jurisdiction and we are suffering. Most of the time they come with security personnel and harass us and our customers in the name of tax collection. More so, AMAC and AEPB seem to be confused on specific areas of jurisdiction, because they cross each other’s boundary. AEPB is expected to handle the city centre and AMAC the suburbs like Apo, Nyanya Karimo, etc but they don’t stick to their areas.”
“However, thank God that President Tinubu has created a stand alone Ministry of Tourism to ensure that the sector is given a 100 per cent concentration by the minister instead of the regular two in one Ministry,” Kazeem said.
According to the HOFA President, the solution to multiple taxation is what Tinubu is trying to do; ask us to pay one tax to the government and the government now takes care of AMAC, AEPB and others.