Some mushrooming buildings in Lusaka's Kanyama township where many Zambians are building houses

Consumers Unity and Trust Society (CUTS) International Zambia has recommended that the Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) defers the enforcement of the withholding tax LAW on rental income due to the high cost of living in Zambia.

CUTS International Zambia Center Coordinator, Simon Ng’ona explained to QFM News that though the law has been there for some time now, it is prudent that government through ZRA suspends its implementation.

Mr. Ng’ona said his organization has received a number of concerns from people over the income tax on rentals and that government should look at this law again.Mr. Ng’ona argued that the move will force Landlords to hike rentals which are already high in most parts of the country.

He has since appealed to the Zambia Revenue Authority to work out measures that will see to it that this law does not make things worse considering that the cost of living in Zambia is already high.

Recently the PF Government called on all citizens renting out property to be paying 10 per cent withholding tax to the Zambia Revenue Authority because it is law.Information and Broadcasting Services Minister Chishimba Kambwili made the call during a live interview on Radio Luapula in Nchelenge District.The Minister said that failure to pay the tax is breaking the law and if there are concerns on the amount of the percentage, Government is ready to dialogue on the percentage of the tax but paying withholding tax is law and every citizen should comply.

Mr. Kambwili said the law was passed between 1992 and 1994 by the MMD Government at the time but were timid to implement the law because of politics of appeasement.

He said withholding tax is not a new law except that the MMD feared to lose votes from the people if they implemented the law but law is law and every citizen should comply.

Mr. Kambwili said the PF Government is just implementing the law that has been on the law books for many years and every citizen who owns property and rents it out should pay the 10 per cent withholding tax to enable Government in raising the required funds for financing developmental projects.

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36 COMMENTS

  1. This is long over due….. too many Zambians have mushroomed all sorts of structures they are calling houses without paying tax and those that have built huge house have turned them in B&B (mansion houses for sexual mischief). Zambian government need to broaden tax base. Withholding tax is part of our constitution and I agree with the minister, MMD was pleasing voter. Good workp F

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    • @zero boys. Iwe chi chishimba kambwili stop being f001ish.arleady the landlords are exploiting us and you want the tax burden to go up just because all is paid for you by govt.think of us in the ghettos. Blood f00i.

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  2. This is long over due….. too many Zambians have mushroomed all sorts of structures they are calling houses without paying tax and those that have built huge house have turned them in B&B (mansion houses for sexual mischief). Zambian government need to broaden tax base. Withholding tax is part of our constitution and I agree with the minister, MMD was pleasing voter. Good work PF

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    • Stup!d Boy! We the tenants are suffering under the fire from landlords and you support a useless decision by a bankrupt govt. You don’t know that this is another rental increment to those who dont own houses. If they indirectly increase rentals like this with the hardship of high fuel costs, how do you think an ordinary worker will survive. This Govt has failed period! They have a lot of pressures created by indecision which they are putting on a poor Zambian worker.

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  3. Zero Boyz like your name, you have Zero brains! The Govt is giving mines Tax relief at the expense of a poor Zambian. It just doesen’t make sense how govt can give the already filthy rich mines tax relief and resort to squeezing the life out of the poor Zambians with this Withholding tax garbage. Shame on these chaps!

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  4. Wrong timing if you ask me lol. If l was his advisor l would have advised it be brought it in after 2016 and work at creating proper modalities and data base in 2015 while getting consensus from the people all the way- true ownership of the process and end product but then…

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  5. If implemented this law would upset a lot of voters. Better wait after 2016 elections.

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  6. I thought Sata’s legacy was more money in our pockets and not the pockets of a bloated government? These people (PF) are taking people for granted. They think Zambians are fools and have short memories and no intelligence. How can the whole government let go mining taxes and squeeze its citizenry with more taxes? Unacceptable if you ask me.

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  7. It is good to pay taxes where governments can be held accountable for the money they collect.

    But surely not our government which can even conceal loans in the name of national security.

    With or without this tax law these chaps will have a lot of things to explain next year. Whether you advise them to do it now or not the chaps have lost credibility at least for now.

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  8. This is a non-starter.A tenant can not bre so stupid to say i rent this house.He/She will just say its a family house …i pay nothing.
    Rentals will be too high for the majority already suffering Zambians.For instance if the landlord has been demanding K1,000.00 per month, he / he will need to maintain that..as a result the landlord will eventually hike the rental such that even if 10% is decucted as witholding tax, he/she will atleast get the K1000.00…WHO SUFFERS…THE TENANT.THIS IS RUBBISH.

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    • @Conny if you do that to me l will report you to ZRA and tell them you said l should tell them you are my relative!

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    • Zambians are gullible and its such a hoax to belong to such a country. That is the reason war torn countries are better off developed than that God forsaken state. Politicians are there for their own beneficiation. Tell me where will that money go if not in the pockets of the so called fattened politicians. Its a pity lol!

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  9. GRZ must re-think and research before opening a padoras’ box. Most houses are not complete and others are very old houses built in the early 1930s’. The so called landlords use the rentals to pay for upgrades – and remain with a little for livelihoods. Ask tenants the state of most of these houses. landlords pay rates and ground rent as well. valuation rates are very high – check with Councils.; Do not spread poverty please PF

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  10. Yes let Government officers also sacrifice by removing all those tax free allowances, so that everyone bears tax equally, politicians do not pay taxes and senior govt leaders.

    So land lords should only agree to pay when everyone is contributing including the mines, company executives, MPs, Ministers, Army senior officers remove all free things.

    PF should reduce the bloated cabinet ministers to lees than 50 for both full and deputy ministers.

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  11. Pliz zambians,lets vote wisely,and make sure we kik out pf in power in 2016 or else, will suffer as long as pf is in power.Lungu has failed us as zambians how can we as zambians keep on suffering while foreiners enjoy themselves from our own wealth without paying the required tax.shame on our current leadership!

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  12. Imwe mwala umisha abanenu. They are failing to pay civil servants’ salaries. Bapeni tuma 10% limbi ba la pemako. Ifintuuu…..(‘m learning to write in my mother tongue).

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  13. These buggers are not feeling the pinch because they get everything free from toilet paper to everything that you can think of. They are a heartless bunch of leaders.

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  14. True us tenants will bear the brunt of this 10%- makes a mockery of the wage increase. We need the tenants association to speak to PF before 2016

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  15. Chi Zero boyz you are just a cadre who is benefiting from public funds. You dont know the suffering we are going through especially with rental. PF has over borrowed and want to shift the burden on poor Zambians.

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  16. “To fund Developmental Projects”…………what a corny excuse,from removing subsides,increasing fuel now to this nonsense.How much Tax do these Fart cats in Govt pay?

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  17. And what relief do i get if i get a loan to purchase a house and put it on rent? All “investors” have the capital allowance and some Tax deferrment.

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  18. Am so upset about this with holding tax. Am a single parent who struggled so much to build a small house which is giving me income to pay for my children at UNZA who cannot be given bursary because the gvt has no money. Now you want to get the little left away from us.

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  19. govt is running away from responsibilty but want to introduce their tax for doing nothing.
    give us all plots/land and increase yo land rates. ternants are already too poor to be subjected to this kind of exploitation. the minimum cost of accommodation in solwezi is k 1500/month for a bedsitter. landlords have already proporsed to increase the rentals to k 2000/month. your with holding tax is just confirming the need to increase the already high cost. twapapata kanshi tupeniko ama plots so that we all become landlords. you get yo cut from rates.

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  20. one fact which remain glaring is that edigar and the team are spending too much on trips.for once will a month pass without edigar going out for an important meeting? and dont take a presidential visit t b cheap! the advance party comprise not less than 20 men who at times are in a country t b visited for minimum 7 days accomodated at executive facilities.you know how many dollars each receive per night ? what of pipo that accompany the president on the official day( s). that is the reason patrotic zambians shud be remindg edigar to cut on foreign trips than squeezing the balls of lardlords .personally i will pass the cost on tenants.

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  21. Actually 10% is just part of the story….in addition the landlord will pay PAYE on the net rent because it is considered income once it crosses the veil! So the effective tax is 10% + % applicable to that particular landlord…..the high end is looking at something like 45%! Eish, you can never win with these guys!

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  22. If not deferred, let WHTax be reduced to 3% . If the govt listened to cries of mines on tax, it should listen to the cries of the tenant as well.

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  23. CUTS, thank you very much for coming to the rescue of landlords and tenants. It is not just the tenants who will feel the brunt. May the law enforcers be reminded that LANDLORDS are already paying enormous amounts of GROUND RATES and PROPERTY RATES on the same properties they are being asked to pay WITHHOLDING TAXES!!!!!!!! L et not the Government promote the suffering of people which they advocate to alleviate!!!

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  24. if mmd fears to lose vote if the law enforced , same applies to pf , expect no one to vote in 2016 or any by election may arise . put in more money in peoples pocket ,oppsite action exploit peoples money to bomas pocket

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  25. Housing policy should be to empower people. Gvt should be building homes and letting people rent to own houses( not the exorbitant National Houses!)National Housing Authority should be disbanded! PF should not work counter clockwise, The Rich becoming Richer and ThePoor becoming poorer!

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    • I agree. When i look at the CROP of NGOs nowadays and you ask them what issues they work on, at Poverty reduction, peoples rights etc. And when you ask further what exactly are you working on on poverty, the answers i get are not convincing. I think the focus for this organization is clear. Same applied to the one that works on nutrition. Others are political organizations especially those in the grand coalition.

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  26. I have always said that is PF doing CUT AND PEST or it has the duty to scrutinise whether LAWS put in place by other parties when they were in power meaningful. If PF was a PARTY FOR THE POOR, then I wonder why it could enforce such a law that digs in the homes of the majority poor in Zambia. Why should PF only be interested in enforcing what it found and not enforce what it will put in place to tally with their manifesto? It is folly for PF to think that people are not aware that the government is broke and it is trying to siphon every bit of money from the already suffering citizens. Recently there was a hike in fuel prices and this has a direct impact on the poor Zambians. I ask those in leadership to have serious look at their minifesto, it is like some do not know it well, they re pas

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  27. BUT Y SHUD THE PF GOVERMENT EMPLEMENT IT NOW WEN THEY HAVE BIN IN POWER OMOST 4 YEARS?ITS BECOZ THEY ARE BROKE.INSTEAD OF COLLECTING FROM MINE COMPANIES HU PAY ALMOST NOTHING FOR TAX,THEY SQUEEZ INOCENT ZAMBIANS?DOES LUNGU KNOW THEY WILL BE ELCTIONS NEXT YEAR/DOES THIS MAN HAVE ADVISORS?MAJORITY OF TENANTS AND LANDLORDS ARE IN PF STONGHOLDS AND IF RENTALS INCREASE DOES HE THINK WE WILL VOTE FOR HIM?LET HIM GO AHEAD WITH THE SAME TAX,HE WILL MAKE HISTORY AS THE SHORTEST SERVING PRESIDENT IN ZAMBIA.

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    • My brother judging by the reasoning capacity of the general Zambian populous in the past you might be in for a shock. Zambians remind me of those hopeless wives who are continuously mistreated, battered and cheated on but boast about having a man and heavily defending their husband. We baked a loaf of bread but we are staring into the oven somehow expecting it to transform into a sumptuous cake, enjoy guys.

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  28. PF you listened to the Mines over tax, now it’s time you listened to the suffering Zambians over this tax. I know you will.

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