The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) has apologised to Christians over a flyer posted on its social media handle.

The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has expressed disapproval of the flyer posted by FIRS for Easter.

The flyer titled: “Jesus paid your debts, not your taxes” sparked widespread condemnation from many Nigerians who viewed it as disrespectful to the significance of Easter.

Responding to the criticism, FIRS in a statement by Dare Adekanmbi, Special Adviser Media to the FIRS chairman emphasised that it never intended to denigrate Jesus Christ or diminish the importance of His sacrifice.

The FIRS acknowledged its role as a responsible government agency and its awareness of Easter’s core message.

Adekanmbi explained “the flyer’s purpose was to engage taxpayers in a unique way, reminding them of their civic duty – prioritising tax payments”.

The FIRS admitted that the message caused offense in some circles and acknowledged the “unintended meaning/insinuation” interpreted by many, expressing regret for any miscommunication.

It acknowledged CAN’s statement, which recognised the potential for creative taxpayer engagement and expressed sincere apologies for any misinterpretations.

The FIRS emphasised commitment to religious neutrality, stating its core function is to assess, collect and account for revenue that contributes to the overall wellbeing of the Nigerian Federation”.

The FIRS offered renewed apologies to CAN and all Christians who felt offended by the unintended consequences of the Easter Sunday message.

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