Only Patriotic Citizens Who Pay Tax Can Demand Good Governance, Says FIRS


Citizens themselves first need to discharge their civil obligations to pay their tax before they can hold their government to account and make demands of elected public officials to deliver good governance

This was the position of the Executive Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Muhammad Nami, during the unveiling of the FIRS Service Charter on Tuesday in Abuja.

Mr. Nami, while delivering the opening remarks at the unveiling, which was one of the events hosted by the Service in commemoration of the 2022 Global Customer Service Week, called on citizens to be fair to the government by paying their taxes, noting that this was the pathway to the country’s development.

His words: “Nigerians should be fair to the government. We must start to trust the Government. Nigerians must also understand that tax is a statutory responsibility and they should pay their taxes.

“Globally tax is a social contract between government and its citizens. It is when citizens fulfil their obligations that they have the moral right to ask government to account for taxes they pay. Nigerians are expected to understand that globally citizens pay for their own civilization; as most infrastructure and privileges in advanced countries are made possible by the revenue generated through the taxes their citizens pay to the government.”

The FIRS Chairman also appealed to governments at the federal, state and local levels to give value to citizens for their tax.

Nami stated that the Global Customer Service Week aligned with one of his four-cardinal objectives for the FIRS, which is making the Service a “Customer-centric institution”.

He noted that the FIRS had taken steps and actions to institutionalise effective and efficient service delivery to all its stakeholders.

The FIRS chief said: “For us at the FIRS, the essence of the customer service week is to further promote the culture of quality service delivery and team spirit among staff and reward them for their commitment to the mission and vision of the Service.

“The importance of efficient service cannot be relegated in a service-oriented institution like ours as quality service to our taxpayers and customers in general lead to increase in tax compliance and revenue generation, which is integral to nation building.

“The theme of this year’s celebration has been appropriately chosen: Celebrate Service! For us at FIRS, we recognize the commitment of our staff, and have every reason to celebrate them for the services they render to our customers.

“To demonstrate our commitment to quality service and a delightful customer experience, I am pleased to inform you that Management has approved a Service Charter, which will be unveiled shortly. The Service Charter contains the services we render, and is our service agreement, promise and commitment on how we will be rendering service to FIRS esteemed customers and our expectations from them.”

Chief Executive Officer (CEO) SERVICOM Presidency, Mrs Nnenna Akajemeli who delivered the keynote address at the unveiling, commended the FIRS for being one of the agencies of government committed to providing value to taxpayers.

The Global Customer Service Week is a week-long international celebration that calls attention to the importance of customer service and the people that provide it with a view to boosting morale and teamwork.

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