File: FORMER Vice President George Kunda (c) confers with his two lawyers Sunday Nkonde (r) and Robison Malipenga after the petition hearing at High Court in Lusaka

FORMER Republican vice-president George Kunda allegedly wrote a letter to former Finance minister Situmbeko Musokotwane objecting to the decision to award a tax deferment facility to Varun beverages, it has emerged.

Mr Kunda, in his letter a few days before former president Rupiah Banda summoned a meeting at State House on March 15, advised that companies that wanted a tax holiday should arrange with the Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA).

He had contended in the letter that a “face-less” tax deferment was illegal. Mr Kunda was also Justice minister at the time.

Sources said when he appeared before a team of law enforcement officers, Mr Kunda was asked to read the letter and confirmed that he authored it because it was his duty.

A letter from Mr Banda to Dr Musokotwane in April 2010 directing the ministry to facilitate the awarding of tax holiday was written after Mr Kunda’s advice against the deferment facility.

The former president’s letter has, however, allegedly disappeared from the Ministry of Finance in unexplained circumstances.

The special combined team of security personnel investigating allegations of corruption has attempted in vain to trace the letter dated April 24, 2010.

The letter was a follow up to a meeting that allegedly took place at State House on March 15, 2010 called by Mr Banda in which he allegedly asked Dr Musokotwane to ensure that the tax holiday was granted.

Those who attended the State House meeting included Dr Musokotwane, former Commerce minister Felix Mutati, and Mr Kunda.

Others were Zambia Development Agency (ZDA) Director-General Andrew Chipwende and former chief budget analyst in charge of tax revenue who is now director of economic management, Felix Nkulukusa.

In an interview in Lusaka on Tuesday, Mr Chipwende said he was just called to attend the State House meeting and could not discuss the matter in detail.

“We do not operate like that. I was called to that meeting and what is said is for the Government and not for the public,” Mr Chipwende said.

Mr Kunda declined to comment on the matter saying it would be hard for him because a warn and caution statement had been recorded from Dr Musokotwane.

Value Added Tax (VAT) is not on the list of taxes available for deferment to companies according to the Zambia Development Agency Act (ZDA), but was offered to Varun.

[Times of Zambia]

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16 COMMENTS

  1. If the President instructed the granting of a tax holiday, what good will the vice president’s (previous) opinion on the issue do? 

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  2. But surely call me dull, but how does a country develop without these extra tax monies? Because even the little tax that is paid is washed away into selfish politicians pockets. Please introduce a subject called “Good negotiation skills” in primary schools because most leaders seriously lack it

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  3. (Value Added Tax (VAT) is not on the list of taxes available for deferment to companies according to the Zambia Development Agency Act (ZDA), but was offered to Varun.)…………………..Yes its not because thats ZRA’s baby,what are you trying to insinuate here? Please if you have failed to prove your allegations stop the rumour mongering and conceed that your are just a bunch of motormouths.

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  4. The letter has “disappeared” because it probably never existed at all. You don’t know what to believe with these guys, today 3 trillion fake money, tomorrow 3 trillion wasted maize cash. Awe mwandi!

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  5. Was the Attorney General consulted? These deals which are cut at Plot 1 are questionable. Is it the president’s prerogative to even get involved in detailed operations of smaller entities as Varum? FTJ delegated most of his dubious deals, that’s why Samuel Musonda, Xavier Chungu, Katele Kalumba and others are today in trouble. Obviously RB’s boys have stolen that letter. If LPM’s speech to Parliament was stolen a day before he addressed the House to seek FTJ’s immunity lifted, who are we doubt that this letter has disappeared dubiously. No one is talking about CCTV at MoF

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  6. VAT arises at the occurrence of a sale. How do you defer it? Bevereges are neither exempt nor zero rated. What were these guys trying to do when tax holidays are only available on certain tax regimes? There was too much manipulation for personal gain in the previous govt. Bukabwalala in other words. Shameful!!!!!

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  7. VAT cannot be deferred,this was purely theft  and corruption by Dr Musokotwane.This man was a shroud silent banner,what a crook.Its time they all atoned for their sins against Zambia

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  8. Are you people talking about VAT deferment know what you are talking about or you just feel the urge to write something.Who told you in your tiny pf brains that it cant be deferred?

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  9. The Man calling himself Ugly should be very bitter over some investigations. Soorryy mwandi but Zambia must move on.

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  10. ugly truth is infact very angry at being very ugly hence his ugly comments. ignore him. if he continues, i will ask italian bunga bunga (original) to extend his offer he just dangled at senior citizen. am sure he has more ropes in his stead. some of these guys need to hang themselves.

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  11. Please understand that VAT is a Tax paid by the retail buyer for local consumption. In this case an individual who buys a product and in this case lets say a Pepsi cola is charged an extra 20% which is the VAT value in Zambia. The seller or any company acts just as an agent to collect on behalf of Government. So you can’t understand how and why RB and Musokotwane gave a VAT waiver to this company? Thats why when you are exporting VAT is Removed or Refunded. Thats why Varum Bervarages has been quick to say they are ready to pay back. They know they where just agents when it came to VAT. And thats why Kunda wrote that it was not legal to waive VAT on any company. So RB and Musokotwane where wrong on this. It was a deal they did even after advice from Kunda. 

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    • Leave Musokotwane alone. It was not his decision. Blame your rotten political system with its Imperial Presidency. In Zambia the President DECIDES. Full Stop. Therefore the buck stops at him. RB ORDERED! This is the same way Sata is ORDERING and issuing DIRECTIVES some of them unconstitutional and illegal. But since you are a typical Zambian you are so blind to the obvious because your concerns are largely coloured and based on bigotry!

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  12. chipwende said” what was discussed at the meeting was for the govt not the public”, I thought the gvt exists for the public, this is the reason these guys steal, because they think they have power to decide on every thing without in put from the public, they use tax payers money as their own with no regard for the people who toil for that money.

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