KENYANS 09 APR 2020
The Kenya Revenue Authority has unveiled a reward of Ksh 500,000 to any member of the public with information on individuals or entities subverting tax laws.
The taxman had resorted to offering the kitty as an extra incentive in the fight against tax evasion in the country.
The cash reward system is provided for by the Tax Laws Amendment Bill 2020 and cuts back on the requirements for awards that may result in the recovery of taxes.
Currently, the Act solely recommends an award for information given and leads to realisation and actual recovery of the unassessed taxes.
“This provision will only apply where KRA has not awarded the informer for identification of unassessed duties taxes or recovery of unassessed duties or taxes,” an assessment of the Tax Laws (Amendment) Bill currently tabled before the National Assembly reads.
“The proposed amendment will provide an additional incentive for persons to provide information to KRA on tax defaulters,” the bill reads in part.
KRA currently is expected to pay whistleblowers five per cent of the total recovered taxes or a maximum of Ksh 2 million for the information given.
Informants who aid in operations by KRA pocket one per cent of the total value or a maximum of Ksh 100,000. The agency has embarked on making improvements on revenue collection and thus targeting tax frauds in line with an order issued by resident Uhuru Kenyatta on November 2018.
The authority will keep an eye on high profile, and rich persons whose lifestyle they find not proportional to the taxes remitted.
KRA’s enforcement unit has efforted to crackdown on tax evaders by seeking bank statements, import records, vehicle registration documents, electricity and power bills, and information from the Kenya Civil Aviation Authority (KCAA).
In August 2019, KRA revealed that of the 401,306 registered companies, cooperatives and trusts in their database, only 33,426 which is 8.3 per cent, paid taxes on their net income for the 2018/2019 fiscal year. This was regardless of the fact that 168,428 had filed returns which gave an indication they were active.