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The House of Representatives has resolved to investigate car hailing service providers like Uber and Bolt as well as other technology-based transport companies in Nigeria.
The House is to set up an ad hoc committee to “investigate the level of compliance of all Information Communication Technology aided transport companies with the country’s extant tax laws.”
The panel is to report back to the House within four weeks for further legislative action.
The probe is based on a motion moved by a member, Ganiyu Johnson, at the plenary on Tuesday, which was titled, ‘Urgent Need to Investigate the Tax Returns of Information Communication Technology and Transport Companies in Nigeria.’
Johnson noted that in the global economy, ICT is often regarded as a strategic tool for achieving success and competitiveness in organisations. He also noted that in recent times, ICT has had significant impacts on the way organisations operate, as it offers tremendous opportunities such as storing, processing, retrieving, disseminating and sharing of information.
According to him, ICT has made transportation business very accessible, cheaper and lucrative especially in the urban areas, and at the same time created many job opportunities for unemployed persons, as the people’s desire for comfortable ride services have enabled companies such as Bolt and Uber to spread widely across the country.
The lawmaker stressed that many transportation activities now occur through online booking and payments, which he said make the ordering of the services easier and efficient.
Johnson added, “The House is informed that the average weekly earnings of Bolt and Uber drivers are about N60,000 to N120,000, while the companies take off 20 per cent and 25 per cent, respectively, as commission from the earnings of each driver operating on their platforms.
“The House is cognisant that the companies have benefited from facilities of the Federal Government such as road and security network, which grants them ease of doing business, thus they ought to be fully accountable and up to date in tax remittances.
“The House is concerned that as corporate identities, it is not clear whether the companies are fully compliant with the requirements of the Companies and Allied Matters Act, considering that the services are made online.”