Buhari Signs Executive Order On Money Laundering, Tax Evasion

The Nigeria Lawyer

President Muhammadu Buhari has approved a new Executive Order to fight money laundering and tax evasion. The executive order has been tagged as Voluntary Offshore Assets Regularization Scheme (VOARS) 008. Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity to the President, Garba Shehu, in a statement yesterday, said the order takes effect from Monday, October 8, 2018, the day it was signed by the President. He said by this order, Nigerian taxpayers who had offshore assets and incomes would within a period of 12 months, declare voluntary those assets and pay taxes on them. According to him: "When they do this, they should expect to derive certain specified benefits. "Any taxpayer who truthfully and voluntarily complies with the conditions of the scheme, pays a one-time levy of 35 per cent on the total offshore assets or pays all outstanding taxes, penalties and interest after forensic audit of their offshore assets and income shall obtain immunity from prosecution for tax offences and offences related to offshore assets, among others. "Equally, failure of any defaulting taxpayer to take advantage of this scheme shall, at the expiration of the scheme result in investigation and enforcement procedures concerning offshore assets anywhere in the world pursuant to information now readily available through automatic exchange of information between Nigeria and foreign countries." Garba said.