Lagos state commissioner for economic planning and budget, Olusegun Banjo, says people are consistently migrating to the state because other states are failing.
Banjo, who spoke at stakeholders meeting on consumption tax at the state house on Thursday, said the population leads to a rapid dilapidation of the state’s infrastructure.
The commissioner said the state was not generating enough internal revenue to provide the needed infrastructure for the teeming population.
This, he said, is as a result of false income declaration and tax evasion by Lagosians.
“When you look at the quantum of people that come to Lagos every day and the infrastructure available, it deteriorates fast and we are not getting this in terms of revenue to be able to balance up,” Banjo said.
“In this year’s budget, we have a capital ratio of 60:40. We have to deal with the ever-increasing population which in 2012 was estimated at 12.2 million.
“Increasing migration from other states, because other states are failing, people are rushing to Lagos. When people don’t declare their income, the only way we can get something from them is through their consumption.”
According to Banjo, the state government needs to build its revenue the way it is building bridges.
He also blamed the build-up of waste in the state on over population.
He added that since resident’s of the state have failed to declare their income, it has become pertinent for the government to ensure the full implementation of the consumption tax law.
“We plan well on capital projects in Lagos state but we find it difficult to plan our revenue due to the attitude of citizenry in the declaration of their incomes, and in some cases, outright evasion of taxes,” he said.
“It has just occurred to us that we need to build our revenue the same way we are building bridges, if we are to succeed in our vision for Lagos state. While our GDP keeps growing, the ratio of taxes to GDP keeps dropping. It is very abnormal and this regulation is to remove the abnormality.
“In the past, our budget has been skewed in favour of capital expenditure due to rapid deterioration of our infrastructure, as a result of an ever growing population.
“We keep doing projects and the projects keep deteriorating because of our population. We have to continue because we cannot stop. The day we stop, we will have problems in Lagos. The law is coming to fill the gap in our economic development planning process and we are going to place premium on consumption as a veritable planning tool for state revenue.”