The Nigerian tax system is totally messed up - Etcetera

For the record, this article is not meant to give celebrities who don’t pay their taxes a pass. I think we all should pay what we legally owe, including those whose work puts us on the big screen, the sports field or in the recording studio.

But I do have an understanding of the multitude of reasons celebrities give for not paying tax. And I think you should too.

The Nigerian tax system is totally messed up… yes, messed up in all ramifications. I concur with the argument that monies generated from taxes in Nigeria are not judiciously used by the government. Or we haven’t seen what the money is being used for.

When singer and actress Lauryn Hill and other American artists pleaded guilty and even got incarcerated for tax evasion, a lot of you must have asked: “Why can’t our celebrities pay taxes like their American counterparts?”

But the real question is, how many Nigerians pay tax? As you are reading this article, I can bet that you probably don’t know where the LIRS or FIRS offices are in your local government.

So before you all jump on the government-must-tax-Nigerian-entertainers bandwagon, a few important points are worth noting.

Most Nigerian entertainers are evading tax, not because they intentionally want to, but because they don’t know their taxable income. Likewise, the Nigerian government, through all its tax agencies, is losing billions of naira every year from the entertainment industry because they are yet to discover a proper structure for taxation of the industry.

I know it seems like a great thing to take home a million-naira plus pay cheque for singing a song, starring in a TV show or making a movie. And I’m sure the financial perks and other benefits of stardom aren’t lost on celebrities. But think for a moment about what it must be like to get one or two big cheques a year (either lump sums, advances or royalties) and then have to manage that money wisely all year long, maybe not knowing when the next cheque will come in.

Most people in Nigeria are wage earners or businessmen and women who get regular cheques once a month or daily money from their businesses. Some employees in the oil sector might get paid twice a month. Overall, the average person who’s working can count on a pretty steady pay cycle. But that’s not the case with entertainers. Sure, they get their paydays – big ones, in fact. But when they get paid, it’s like receiving a huge financial windfall. And we all know what happens with most windfalls. They blow the money. Despite all the bling and the perceived glamour that come with being a celeb, the truth is that it’s tough being a celebrity and keeping your finances straight.

There’s also the issue of financial oversight. Most naija celebs don’t know what to do with their money when they get paid for gigs or appearances. Some have gone broke for trusting the wrong people to handle their money or to give them financial advice, that’s why a lot of artists who once lived comfortably have pretty much kissed their riches goodbye.

Being a celebrity anywhere in the world means you’re constantly in the spotlight. That additional scrutiny doesn’t just come from the public or the media. Celebrities, with their “I’m-living-large” lifestyles and their out-sized pay cheques, are also prime targets of fraudsters.

In fact, if you’re a public figure who is routinely taking home cheques in the six, seven and eight figures range, you have pretty much put a bull’s eye on your back when it comes to the tax collectors. Simply put, the tax authorities in Nigeria know they cannot make an example out of celebrities for tax evasion. Nigerians generally don’t believe in paying tax and coupled with corruption in the system, it is hard convincing a Nigerian to remit a chunk of his or her earnings as tax to a corrupt government.

So you cannot bash naija celebs for non-payment of tax without taking certain factors into consideration, because that would be a case of the pot calling the kettle black. Have you paid your tax? I can bet that even the tax collectors in Nigeria don’t pay their tax. Saying that millions of Nigerians are enjoying some kind of financial Christmas – in the form of tax evasion – would be an understatement. So why should we expect celebrities to be any different simply because their cheques are bigger? It doesn’t work that way. Their expenses are bigger too, in many cases way bigger than most people can imagine.

Also, unlike the average employee, celebrities don’t have taxes automatically taken out of their pay cheques. The corruption in the Nigerian tax system has got so bad that even the workers having taxes automatically taken out of their pay cheques have cried out that their taxes are not being remitted as claimed by their employers. And the tax agencies are not doing enough to rectify the decay in the system. And someone is screaming that the government should start taxing entertainers?

Tell the average Nigerian that he or she has been mandated by the law to pay tax and you will have yourself a barrage of insults to deal with. Yes, it is that bad. If the government does a thorough manhunt for tax offenders, even you who are reading this article right now will perhaps get in trouble with the law.

Iyanya's Girlfriend,Freda Francis Birthday Message To Him

Socialite,Freda Francis pen down a sweet message to her boo,Iyanya as he turn a year older. She wrote;

Happy Birthday to @iyanya My Ride or Die, Brother, Prayer Partner, Friend, My Favorite person in the world, Partner in crime, G, Munchkin ...Here's wishing you all that you wish for yourself and I Pray for God's continuous Blessing, Grace, Wisdom, Unmerited favour & Protection upon your life in Jesus name, Amen. Many more beautiful years ahead. Xxx
Aww,isn't that sweet? Happy birthday Iyanya!

Lamar Odom Goes Off Dialysis,No Kidney Transplant Required

Lamar Odom

A source revealed to US weekly that Lamar Odom's kidney is improving and he is off dialysis. They report;"walking with help now" and "getting better every day."
"He is getting stronger every day,". "And [he] has a great team of therapists and specialists working with him. He's 6-foot-11 and weighs a lot, so getting him to walk a little has been really hard."

Meet Leonardio Dicarpio's Doppelgänger.Konrad Annerud

Leonardo DiCaprio Has the Most Insane Swedish Doppelganger
Leonardo Dicarpio has a 21 year old doppelgänger,his name is Konrad Annerud,from Sweden. Konrad told Swedish site,Nyheter24;

‘I am told I resemble Leo quite often,'‘When I was in Italy this summer I almost felt like shaving my hair off. It was very chaotic; people were yelling “Leo” and wanted to take photos with me all the time. It was one of the craziest things I’ve ever experienced.’
Wow! the resemblance is striking! Hollywood could use him for a younger Leo.More photos below...

Tracy Daniel Diaries : Dont You Just Hate...

Tracy Daniel Diaries : Dont You Just Hate...
Tracy Daniels just went through a 'don't you just hate' moment. On her way home from work few days ago, Tracy sees this guy that used to sorta ask her out.  You see the thing is, Tracy meets lots of guys at her place of work but its either they are married. Not her type, broke... you name it.
She met this guy in his late thirties, they work in the same building but different organizations. Just like everyone have problems, this guy had his problem; He married a young girl that wasn't ready to start a family but had to marry him because he had the finances to get her where she needs to be. You see, where Tracy is from, men dominate everything and have the power (what do I mean where Tracy is from...I believe is everywhere). 

How to Get Away With Murder Star,Karla Souza Cover GQ,October Issue

Don't you just love that show? I watch it and i'm very hooked. Anyways, on of the stars of the show 'How to get away with murder' Karla Souza,29 is the cover girl of the month on GQ. She said she was asked by the publication to go nude for their cover a year ago but she refused.
'They wanted me in a bra and panties but I was like, "I don't want to do the bra and panties on a bed thing,"''I wanted sophisticated, fancy, nice and beautiful and sexy, but not that.'
'Luckily, they said yes to bathing suits and things I felt more comfortable in,' she said, appearing on the October issue in a denim bustier tankini top and matching bottoms.
'They had done a lot of the fully naked kind of covers in Mexico,' she said. 'A lot of my fellow actresses had done that so that was the magazine's thing.'
'At the beginning of my career, I did a magazine cover where they gave me boobs that I don't have, a butt that I don't have and a waist that I don't have,' she added. 'I was appalled. It took me three years to ever be in a bikini again. I didn't want people to do that to my body again…So GQ did nothing - literally nothing. It was great.'