Monday, 17 April 2017

Expert Urge Nigerians To Demand Accountability For Taxes Paid

Mrs Morenike Babington-Ashaye, a former
chairman of Ogun State Internal Revenue Service,
has called on Nigerians to demand for
accountability, transparency and good
governance over the administration of the taxes
they pay. Tax(VAT) However, she said this could be achieved through
regular public sensitisation that would help in
enlightening citizens on the importance of
participating in governance. Babington-Ashaye said in an interview on Sunday
in Lagos that Nigerians needed to be more
involved in governance than before. The Founder, Accounting Education and Research
Services (ACCERS), said that Nigerians should
ensure that all structures, processes and
procedures that could engender good
governance were put in place. She also said that Nigeria as a country endowed
with natural and human resources had no business
with poverty. Babington-Ashaye said: “Nigeria as a country has
no business with poverty, and poverty has no
business with Nigeria. “We are blessed, so wonderfully blessed by God
and with natural and human resources, we ought
to be the envy of all nations.” She said that no one had the right to waste or
misuse taxpayer’s money since government funds
were people’s property. The tax expert said that Nigerians’ constant
involvement in the governance, tax process and
procedures would make taxpayers be able to hold
government accountable. Babington-Ashaye said that the Nigerian
constitution, which described as the highest
authority, had not enjoyed wide-spread legitimacy
which in turn had affected confidence in
government. She explained that in terms of the constitution and
taxation, structurally the constitution had created
wastage in public
administration and duplication across the tiers of
government. According to her, estimates show that the running
costs of government at the three tiers had taken
up to 70 to 80 per cent of revenue at the disposal
of government. “As a result, due to the limited remaining funds,
public amenities such as the availability of potable
water, good roads, functioning
schools and public hospitals are like luxuries. “This in turn impacts negatively on society, as we
see more and more Nigerians unable to afford the
necessities of life.”

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