The Executive Chairman of the the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Tunde Fowler on Monday said Nigerians will now pay Value Added Tax (VAT) before obtaining their passports.
Fowler made the statement at the 136th meeting of the Joint Tax Board in Abuja.
He also said those who wants to renew their passports or want a new one will have to provide evidence of tax payment.
He said, “We did take a position and I believe it would be implemented in the very near future that before you get any services from the immigration department: renewal of passports etc, you’d have to show that you are a tax payer.
“These things are normal all over the world, In an effort to serve Nigerians and Nigeria better.
“People believe that payment of tax is a burden and I’ll repeat that you only pay tax on income and profits.
“So if you reside in Nigeria and you are benefiting from being a Nigerian resident, it is only fair that you contribute to the system that makes you enjoy that standard of living.’’
When further probed, he said ”every good and service except from items that are not VATABLE has to be charged VAT.
”What I can tell you is that as we move forward, as you obtain services from government they will ask you to show evidence of tax payment”.