Feature: Wage War against Vanity


By Ayo Akinfe

If President Tinubu really wants to get Nigeria going he needs to wage a war against vanity. All these millions spent on Owambes, private jets, foreign junkets and luxury goods need to be invested in job creation

[1] According to the African Development Bank, Nigeria has an annual infrastructural deficit of $100bn, yet our annual budget is a meagre $$30bn. Basically, what this means is that the government needs to quadruple its budget to address our infrastructure crisis

[2] Given that about 70% of our budget goes on recurrent expenditure, we are spending about $20bn on salaries, the cost of government and day-to-day activities. This means that if we are to address our infrastructure crisis, Nigeria needs an annual budget of $120bn. Now what are the radical steps President Tinubu can take to raise this money?

[3] Impose a private jet tax of 10% on all planes in the country. We are the world’s second fastest growing market for private jets at the moment behind China in the midst of massive poverty

[4] Impose a 40% faith tax on all religious houses that exist on every street corner of Nigeria

[5] Increase the income tax for our highly paid members of the National Assembly to 60% for members of the House of Reps and 70% for senators

[6] Impose a 25% entertainment tax on all owambes and parties. Street parties should attract a tax of 40%

[7] Introduce a special Dubai tax of 50% for all parties, weddings, birthdays, AGMs, etc that take place in Dubai. Basically, you must pay the Nigerian government 50% of the cost of holding your event. This will force many people to hold such events at home

[8] Introduce a flat N5bn traditional rulers tax for any community that wants a monarch. About half of the world’s monarchs are in Nigeria and this is a terrible drain on our resources. After the incumbent passes away, any community that wants to replace him must pay a one-off fee of N5bn and an annual tax of N1bn to that treasury. Given the number of monarchs we have, this would raise billions

[9] Introduce a Title Tax. If you want to bear the title Alhaji, Dr, JP, Apostle, Elder, Engineer, Barrister, Dame, Mallam, Sheikh, Sir, etc, you must pay an annual registration fee of N1m. The only academic title the British introduced was Dr and the only religious titles they brought were Reverend and Father. Even Usman Dan Fodio did not answer the title of Sheikh, Mallam or Alhaji. If you like, you can call this the Vanity Tax

[10] Introduce a special SUV tax. Money raised from this should go directly into road maintenance and construction


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