Tax Appeals Tribunal directed to deal with Sh300 billion tax disputes within 100 days
“We have a new Tax Appeals Tribunal and I want a report from you within three months on what you have done to expedite those cases failure to which, as I have always reminded each civil servant, hakuna shida, wakenya ni wengi ambao wanangojea hizo kazi (there are many Kenyans who can get the job done) … three months my friends and we want it done,” said a stern Uhuru. The President also urged the courts to deal with tax cases with speed but not without taking a swipe at Chief Justice David Maraga, who Monday had an outburst following the budget cuts on the judiciary. Uhuru said the judiciary could expedite the cases if ‘it so desires’.
To strengthen the country's revenue administration, the President directed National Treasury, KRA & the Attorney General to kick start a review of tax laws with a view of creating a robust legal framework that will aid efficient collection & administration of taxes |@WilliamsRuto pic.twitter.com/Zwql7V265O— State House Kenya (@StateHouseKenya) November 5, 2019
The President said tax evasion will be dealt with decisively and directed relevant state agencies to enforce the law in ensuring tax cheats are punished #TaxpayersDay | @WilliamsRuto @KRACorporate pic.twitter.com/ttJrPWEVGp— State House Kenya (@StateHouseKenya) November 5, 2019
SEE ALSO :Family faces Sh85m tax cheat chargesIn addition to the prosecution of firms and individuals that evade taxes, the President also wants the tax and law enforcement agencies to go after professionals that aid in the vice. “Professional advisors and facilitators of tax evasion will also come into focus and face prosecution. Tax evasion will and must be fought on all fronts. My call therefore is on all taxpayers to come forward and regularise their tax positions rather than await the coming storm,” “KRA must be empowered to impose greater accountability in terms of fines and liability for taxes with respect to professional advisors and agents who provide assistance for or enable deliberate non-payment and a draft bill will be placed before cabinet within 120 days, from today.”
President Uhuru also directed National Treasury to review the KRA Act and increase incentives to whistle-blowers that give credible information to the tax collector. “We are particularly keen on whistle-blowers who are able to give the necessary authorities accurate and compelling information that yields additional tax collections. I direct the National Treasury to re-examine the reward system contained in the KRA Act with a view to significantly enhance it and empower KRA to boost further the receipt on actionable intelligence on tax evaders,” he said.
President Uhuru Kenyatta has issued a strong warning against tax evasion saying the government will not hesitate to punish those cheating on tax. He said the government won't allow few individuals to continue paying less than what they should to the taxman | #TaxpayersDay pic.twitter.com/wGmPuX3W54— State House Kenya (@StateHouseKenya) November 5, 2019
SEE ALSO :Who will dare probe DIG Edward Mbugua?The President decried the view held by many Kenyans, where many of them want to beat the tax authorities and evade paying taxes. He directed Treasury and the Office of the Attorney General to review the law and recommend how the tax authority can be equipped with ‘greater powers’ to increase compliance with tax laws. The President also wants provisions of KRA Act that empower authorised KRA officer to exercise powers similar to those of police operationalised. “For far too long, tax evasion, unfortunately, has been glorified in Kenya. Far too many Kenyans feel justified to cheat their fellow Kenyans in paying less that they should into public coffers. Yet despite this behaviour, the same people expect world class road, uality healthcare, education and other public services, not appreciating the fact that these public goods and services are paid for out of tax revenues. This situation is untenable and will not be allowed to continue,” he said, adding that there will be a review of the law to empower KRA.
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