The Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (CITN) has attributed low level of tax compliance in the country to trust deficit between the citizens and the government, among other factors
Adesina Adedayo, president of CITN), stated this on Monday, at the 5th annual international academic conference on taxation which was held at the Kwara State University (KWASU), Malete.
The two-day conference, organised by the CITN in collaboration with KWASU, is themed: “taxation and socio-economic development”.
Adedayo said the citizens do not trust the government to channel tax revenues for its intended purpose. He added that low awareness among the citizens about their tax obligation, poor management and accountability of tax revenue by the government and the lack of a comprehensive database of taxable persons in Nigeria were also responsible for low tax compliance.
The CITN boss said the theme of the conference was apt and timely as the country is already overburdened by huge financial debts amidst poor economic and infrastructural outcomes.
“Moreover, the government’s expenditure has continuously grown above its revenue base, thereby impeding capital formation.
“It is saddening that as of today, Nigeria’s tax revenue mobilisation performance remains below her capacity as the largest economy in Africa with one of the world’s largest population.
”The current number of people captured in the Nigerian tax net is grossly inadequate for a nation that desires to achieve development in the foreseeable future,” Adedayo said.
Mustapha Akanbi, the vice-chancellor of KWASU, said the programme was important given the role of tax in the socio-economic development of any nation.
“You will recall that in order to boost the IGR and curb tax evasion and avoidance at all levels, the Federal Government increased its VAT rate from 5 percent to 7.5 percent and introduced the Finance Act in 2020.
“These measures have not really solved the problem of the country’s socio-economic development. Currently, debt servicing gulps almost 100 percent of the revenue generated while misappropriation of public funds, high insecurity and crime rate, among others, continue to undermine efforts at development.