Taxation, an equitable system and constitutional core values for efficient financial stability in Nigeria
Authors Kareem Adedokun
Affiliations: Senior Lecturer Kwara State University, Malete
Source: Journal of Corporate and Commercial Law & Practice, Volume 5 Issue 2, 2019, p. 79 – 94
Nigeria is a federation consisting of 36 states and a Federal Capital Territory. Each state needs adequate revenue for sustainability and has autonomy to initiate and implement any policy that may promote steady, internally generated revenue within its sphere. But such a policy must align with the overall political objective of the nation, enshrined in the Constitution. The Constitution advocates national integration, residence right and adequate provision for facilities to all citizens, believing that if a system is fair and equal, taxpayers will be more willing to cooperate with it. However, some states of the federation are implementing policies, particularly in education and politics, marred by deep inequalities which affect revenue generation and financial capability of the states. The author, using doctrinal and survey sampling methods, critiques these discriminatory policies and the way in which they interfere with the civic duty of tax obligation. The paper finds that discriminatory practices do not only whittle down revenue generation but also impair national integration. Consequently, it is suggested that various state governments in Nigeria should introduce a tax system that aims at catching many types of income, and ensure judicious application of the tax proceeds for the general and equal benefit of citizens regardless of their places of birth. The suggestion, if accepted and utilised, will enhance revenue generation, promote national integration and ensure delivery of the dividends of democracy to the citizens.