Reclaiming #TaxPower 140 characters at a time

As part of the Tax Power campaign Activista Nigeria convened a twitter conference to harness citizens’ views on tax justice and administration in Nigeria.

Big companies are avoiding tax by shifting money around the world using legal loopholes, often helped by using secretive low-tax havens. Activista and ActionAid see taxation as the most sustainable, largest and stable source of state income and are campaigning to call on big companies to pay their taxes so Nigeria can achieving poverty reductions and deal with inequality

Twitter is indeed a special networking site that facilitates a conversation of 140 characters or less. Twitter has become the fastest growing social networking site and a great place to engage in a public dialogue and mobilize people on any issues

The question we asked ourselves was how we could be part of the tax justice launch in Nigeria.

The question we asked ourselves was how we could be part of the tax justice launch in Nigeria. This was a huge opportunity, to our advantage, to contribute to the public discourse about tax justice.

Robert Kennedy once said, “launch a fight against injustice, creating ripples of hope that would build a current which can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance." There couldn't be a better time than now.

It was in this spirit that, @ActivistaNG held a #TaxPowerNG twitter conference as a platform to discuss, mobilize and empower people to engage relevant stakeholders on tax issues

It is no doubt that twitter has changed the way that online campaigning works, not just the element of pushing out information but the organizing, mobilization and the relationship building that all campaigns try to do.

The official conference hash tag was #TaxPowerNG and had key discussants who spoke on Tax Incentives, Tax Dodging/Evasion and the Nigerian Economy, Multiple Taxation and Women, Tax, Development and people’s Power, The international Architecture; Bringing down the Havens and how can we mobilize citizen participation for the engagements on tax issues. Here's a small taste of key quotes:

Twitter’s ultimate real-time engagement mechanism, moved everything to a much faster speed, helped us break the barriers of distance and keep the conversation precise and on point. We had planned to reach 20,000 but we by far surpassed that target.

At the end of the conference, we had about 150,000 hits and a potential impact of over 1.5 million

Taxation is at the heart of the social contract between citizens and their government Nigeria needs to raise more tax in ways that are progressive and effective. However, the people must continually engage the government to do what is right. The twitter conference gave us a head start on this.

To get the full experience of the conference, Activista Nigeria has collected the whole thing right here [link].