The Executive Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service, Mr Muhammad Nami has warned tax defaulters to settle their indebtedness to the government as there is no hiding place for tax debtors.
He said this in a statement issued by the FIRS on Friday in Abuja. The FIRS boss urged the Nigerian elite to show an example in tax payment to the people by making full disclosure of their taxable incomes to the service. This, he stated, would ensure rapid development of the economy. The statement said he spoke during a meeting with the House of Representatives’ Public Account Committee chaired by Oluwole Oke.
Nami said, “The Nigerian elite must work to change the masses’ perception of us as tax dodgers. When it comes to tax matters, our image out there as elite in the society is that of unpatriotic privileged people who resort to all sorts of tax avoidance and tax evasion schemes despite making good money or returns in their businesses.
“To the man on the street, the typical Nigerian elite makes so much from the system in terms of taxable income, yet he or she does not pay his or her fair share of tax to the government.”
He said many people are of the opinion that wealthy Nigerians don’t pay tax. The FIRS boss added, “Going forward, this should change. The upper echelon of society must see tax avoidance and tax evasion as an unpatriotic act, and stop it forthwith.
“The era where the Nigerian big man shirks his tax responsibilities to the nation is gone. “It is a thing of the past as the FIRS under the current board and management will press everyone, especially the tax-dodging elite, to pay their fair share of tax for the overall benefit of all in the nation-building process.”