He spoke at the second civil society tax compliance advocacy workshop organised by the Initiative for Leadership and Economic Watch in Nigeria, on Monday in Abuja.
Mustapha, who was represented by Mrs Onyegbule Chinyere, Department of Economic Monitoring Multilateral and Research (EMMR), stated that tax evasion contributes to government’s low performance caused by refusals to remit accrued taxes to the government as at when due.
“Citizens’ continuous tax default has further plunged developing nations into recession even when the economy is said to be out of recession. The obvious fact is that the economic operations of developing nations with citizens’ low tax remittance make the countries economically feeble.
Unknown to the citizens, they are also indirectly contributing to the government’s low performance which is occasioned by their refusal to remit accrued taxes to the government as at when due. It is a two-way thing.
“When one fulfills his/her statutory obligations of tax remittance to the government accurately, the other one will have a positive impact to keep the economy stable.
“It is the responsibility of citizens to pay their taxes. It also behoves on us as a government to ensure that the taxes paid by citizens are adequately used to develop the country for the general economic well being of the society.
“Lack of sensitisation on citizen’s tax remittance compliance places the citizens in a tax deficit to the government nationwide. It contributes to citizen’s low tax participation in Nigeria resulting in low tax revenue generation for the government,” Mustapha said.
Executive Director of the Initiative for Leadership and Economic Watch in Nigeria, Splendour Agbonkpolor, said his organisation was ready to take the tax compliance advocacy to every nooks and crannies of the society.
This drive, he noted, is predicated on current low citizen’s tax remittance to the federal government.
He added that he was hopeful the workshop will help to achieve an error-free unified tax operating system, to further engender overall economic growth, and to remove all hindrances inimical to the economic progress of the country.