Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State says that the state plans to stop relying on federal allocation in the next four years.
Mr El-Rufai disclosed this on Thursday in Kaduna in an interview with newsmen shortly after declaring open the 147th meeting of the Joint Tax Board.
He said that the state has been boosting its tax collections and channeling the funds to infrastructure, education and health care.
The governor disclosed that the state Internally Generated Revenue, IGR, rose to N50.9 billion in 2020.
According to him, the state remains focused on further improving tax collection to reflect its vision.
“In our last budget, 60 per cent of our budget came from federal account and 40 per cent from IGR.
“But the way we are going, with very hard working internal revenue service team, in the next four to five years we will get to a point where we will only go to federation account only out of courtesy not because we need the money.
“We are focused on running the government and doing development projects entirely from tax collection, we don’t want to depend on the federation account, that’s our goal.”
Mr El-Rufai explained that his administration is committed to showing the people that the payment of tax is not a burden, but a contribution to development
“And when you contribute, you will see the development, you will see the result.
“This result you will see through free education, 12 years of free education not nine years like other states.
“In Kaduna, it is not just basic education, but free education for junior secondary school and senior secondary and primary which is all financed from taxes.
“We provide primary health care free to children under the age of five and to all pregnant women, and all senior citizens above the age of 70 get free health care, all from taxation.”
According to him, the government is also expanding infrastructure, including expansion of water supply and investment in electrification all from tax collection.
“Our motto is Tax for Service; we want you to pay tax and ask us what we do with the tax money and we can show you what we have done.”
Mr El-Rufai noted that many people in the state are beginning to voluntarily pay tax for the first time in more than 20 years.