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CAN demands FIRS apology over controversial ‘Jesus paid your debt, not your taxes’ easter message



CAN demands FIRS apology over controversial ‘Jesus paid your debt, not your taxes’ Easter message


The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has issued a stern rebuke to the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), demanding a retraction and public apology for its controversial Easter message that sparked widespread outrage and debate across the country.

In a statement released on Tuesday in Abuja, Abimbola Ayuba, the National Director of National Issues and Social Welfare at CAN, condemned the FIRS’ Easter message as a threat to Nigeria’s unity and an affront to religious harmony.

The FIRS’ message, which read “Jesus paid your debt, not your taxes,” drew sharp criticism from CAN, which described it as “offensive and derogatory” to the Christian faith. Ayuba emphasized the importance of upholding mutual respect among diverse religious groups in a nation that prides itself on religious harmony and peaceful coexistence.

“The Easter message by FIRS does not only threaten Nigeria’s delicate unity but also undermines the efforts of many Nigerians working towards fostering mutual respect among diverse religious groups,” Ayuba stated.

CAN’s statement highlighted concerns over the recurrence of provocative messages surrounding religious holidays, particularly when disseminated by public institutions that should exemplify exemplary conduct.

The association expressed deep dismay over the FIRS’ message, warning of its potential to undermine the fabric of national unity.

The controversy surrounding the FIRS’ Easter message has ignited serious debate and discussion nationwide.

Signed by FIRS Chairman Muhammad Nami, the message emphasized the religious obligation for Christians to pay their taxes, a stance that some perceived as insensitive and biased.

Critics have argued that while tax compliance is essential, public messages should prioritize inclusivity and respect for all religious groups to avoid exacerbating tensions within society.

In response to the uproar, CAN has urged both public and private organizations to exercise caution and sensitivity in their communications, particularly regarding religious matters. The association emphasized the importance of considering Nigeria’s diverse religious landscape and promoting mutual respect and understanding in all interactions.

The FIRS’ Easter message debacle underscores broader issues surrounding religious sensitivity and tolerance in Nigeria. As a nation characterized by its rich cultural and religious diversity, fostering unity and harmony requires deliberate efforts to avoid inadvertently offending or marginalizing any religious group.

CAN’s demand for a retraction and apology from the FIRS reflects the association’s commitment to upholding the rights and dignity of Christians across the country.

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