AKWA  Ibom State Governor Udom Emmanuel has urged Nigerians to pay tax, lamenting that the high rate of tax evasion is a disincentive to economic development.

Represented by the Commissioner of Finance, Mr. Akan Okon,  at the opening of the Mandatory Professional Training Programme of the Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (CITN) in Uyo, yesterday, the governor described tax as a major source of government’s revenue in most countries.The governor noted that tax was a civic duty of every eligible citizen.He however advocated effective tax education in Nigeria with a view to motivating high degree of compliance by the people.

Emmanuel urged tax administrators to create public awareness to enable Nigerians understand tax-related legislation and procedures.He added that the enlightenment was expected to reawaken in people a consciousness to be patriotic and see tax payment  as their social responsibility.

The governor said: “Tax is a major source of government’s revenue in many countries. In those countries, people see tax as their civic duty and pay it willingly.“But here, there is a high degree of tax evasion and avoidance. The little money government gets through taxes is through civil servants as their taxes are deducted from source,” he said.