Senior advocate urges FG to introduce wealth tax to reduce poverty



Mr Ahmed Raji, (SAN), an Abuja legal has called on the Federal  government to  introduce a Wealth Tax Policy that will make very rich Nigerians  pay the deserved tax that would be used to cater the downtrodden citizens in the country.


Raji made the call on Sunday in Abuja at a public lecture entitled: “Taxing Powers in a Federal System” to mark his 60th birthday.


The Senior lawyer said that the suggested tax policy, if introduced and implemented,  would make the extremely rich Nigerians to contribute meaningfully to government’s purse.


He added that this would bridge the gap between the affluent and the very poor in the country.


According to the senior lawyer, the  time has come government to do real balancing between the rich and the poor in Nigeria.


He maintained that in the face of harsh economic situation starring poor Nigerians in the face, the poor needed to be considered and not taxed under any guise so as to balance anger against the rich.


The senior lawyer submitted that evidence sufficient that some very rich people in the society owned personal jets worth 50 million dollars each at a time when some families could not afford to eat twice a day.


He argued that it would be difficult the country to witness genuine peace under such a situation.


“It is a fact that the downturn in Nigeria’s economy is having harsh and devastating effects on the poor majority Nigerians.


” The wide disparity between the rich and the poor should be of grave concern to patriotic Nigerians and the way out be found.


“The gap between the rich and the poor is so much and so offensive that it can lead to break down of law and order at any moment.


“It is in the interest of justice that the super rich should shed part of stupendous wealth to cater the downtrodden masses before it is too late.


He noted that a large number of the Nigerians were living in abject poverty and time had come the situation to be addressed.


“Any attempt to pretend that all is well may spell doom the nation. We will be sitting on a keg of powder if we refuse to address the challenges of the poor masses now” he said.


He reiterated that the instrumentality of Wealth Tax be adopted and used to develop the Nigerian nation as done in the U.S., and France.


Raji said that he decided to use the public lecture to mark his so as to use it to draw attention to some issues and challenges that deserved public attention rather than mere merry making.(NAN)