The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) on Monday hinted that Nigerians might begin to show evidence of tax payment – or pay for the Value Added Tax (VAT) – before obtaining their international passports.
This disclosure was made by the Executive Chairman of the FIRS, Mr Tunde Fowler, at the 136th meeting of the Joint Tax Board which had the theme: “ Increased Inter-Agency Co-operation to Enhance Tax Compliance and Optimise Revenue Collection’’ in Abuja.
He said, “We did take a position and I believe it would be implemented in the very near future that before you get any services from the immigration department: renewal of passports etc, you’d have to show that you are a tax payer.
“These things are normal all over the world, In an effort to serve Nigerians and Nigeria better.
“People believe that payment of tax is a burden and I’ll repeat that you only pay tax on income and profits.
“So if you reside in Nigeria and you are benefiting from being a Nigerian resident, it is only fair that you contribute to the system that makes you enjoy that standard of living.’’
”Every good and service except from items that are not VATABLE has to be charged VAT.
”What I can tell you is that as we move forward, as you obtain services from government they will ask you to show evidence of tax payment”.