A little boy, Obanosi, who had just dropped out of elementary school, was returning from the farm with his father after a hot sunny day of hard work to weed their cassava plantation. He asked his father in despair how come they had very little money despite working so hard and wondered why God did not give them more money. The father responded saying God could give money but it is really government who prints them. The little boy then asked why government could not simply print enough money for everyone so that no one would have to suffer like them.
“Well, it is because politicians are selfish and they don't care about the people” said Obanosi's father. Feeling bitter, he added “In fact, government still collects money from the little we have; they say it is tax and we all have to pay it”.
This made the little boy very unhappy as he felt that they were being unfairly treated by people who are more
powerful than them.
Indeed government could have provided free education for Obanosi or created a means for his father to fund his
education so he won't have to drop out of school. And if government had provided enough social services may be
Obanosi's father would not have been very bitter about the tax he had to pay. Unfortunately the father did not know
enough to tell the little boy that if government printed enough money and shared to all then the money will become
worthless. The sad reality is that without education the cycle of ignorance and poverty may continue for yet another
This book is a compilation of my articles published in national and international media on various tax issues and fiscal policy matters. It includes topics on tax reforms, tax accounting and reporting, business competitiveness, regional integration, budget and economy, electronic taxation, transfer pricing, base erosion and profit shifting, oil and gas taxation, and ease of paying taxes. It is an excellent companion and a good source of reference for tax practitioners, accountants, entrepreneurs, lawyers, investors, policy makers and the general public. It aims to bridge the knowledge and information gap on taxation and bring a unique perspective into tax policy and governance.
It addresses such questions as “should poor people like Obanosi's father pay tax?” If so, how much and how should
this compare to what the rich people pay? What level of social services should taxpayers, poor and rich, expect?