It’s always true that either in public or private sector in spite of the prevalent challenges and vulnerability of one ending up with his reputation and hard-earned image being dragged into the mud, there are a silent few who apart from being extraordinary, take prudent measures in managing resources kept in their trust. The present Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS, Muhammad Nami is a sterling model of such a great and rare personalities in today’s Nigeria.
Mr. Nami, the new sheriff in FIRS was appointed as the Executive Chairman, FIRS by President Muhammadu Buhari on 9th December, 2019. Amed with intimidating qualifications and experience, his appointment was seen by many as well deserving; it’s indeed a square peg into square hole.
His sterling credentials and enviable antecedents illustrate the fact that the right man is on the job. Nami, who holds a bachelor’s masters degrees in sociology from the prestigious Bayero University, Kano, is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Taxation, Chartered Institute of Forensic and Investigation Professionals of Nigeria, Institute of Debt Recovery Practitioners of Nigeria and an associate member of the Nigerian Institute of Management (Chartered) as well as the Association of National Accountants of Nigeria, among others too numerous to mention
It’s pertinent to note that Nami has over three decades of working experience in auditing, tax management and advisory. The FIRS boss has rendered management services to his numerous clients in the banking, manufacturing services and in public sector as well as multifarious non-profit organisations across the country.
A thoroughbred public servant, Nami has served diligently in many capacities including various leadership positions. He was at the PKF Kano where he rose to the position senior consultant in charge of tax management and advisory services. He was also the managing consultant of Manam Professional Services (chartered tax practices and advisers) in Kaduna, Abuja and Minna before his appointment to bring to bear his wealth of experience in Nigeria’s main revenue collecting agency, FIRS, in December 2019.
It’s worthy of note that those we always see making progress in their field of human endeavour, did not just get to the top by just sheer luck. They got to the top primarily by divine providence with a dint of hardwork, resilience and dedication; Nami has done much more than the ordinary.
His professional dexterity enabled him to sit on the boards of many companies including statutory organisations. He served as a member of the Presidential Committee on Audit of Recovered Stolen Assets. Besides being chairman of the FIRS, he’s also the chairman of the Joint Tax Board (JTB) and Chairman of the African Tax Administrators Forum (ATAF). As a matter of fact, only a passionate and experienced personality can be such multitasking in the most volatile, complex nation like Nigeria, which is not only the giant of Africa, but also the continent’s largest economy..
Therefore, it’s not surprising to see Nami doing what others could not do and achieving what seems to be unachievable. Today, he has successfully changed the face of the FIRS, enthroned transparency and openness in all its operations and ensured discipline among the staff of the agency. These are no feats, considering the global challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic which had negative impact the economies including.the United States, which is the largest economy in the world. Nami had revealed during the presentation of report on Internally Generated Revenue, IGR, at the 46th meeting of the Joint Tax Board (JTB), that the FIRS generated N4. 178 trillion revenue within only 10 months. .
Also, in the effective management of the current legal battle between the federal government and the some states regarding revenue collection, Nami has been guided by the extant laws of the country and the constitutional provisions guiding the subject of contention. Indeed, Mr Nami’s masterstroke in the FIRS is just the beginning and we’ll surely see many of these in the coming years of his leadership. .
Kera, a journalist, writes from Kaduna.