The Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) in Kitwe distict on the Copperbelt has rejected the business community’s appeal to extend the tax amnesty to December 31st, 2017.
This after the business community in the area appealed to the authority to extend the exercise to December 31st , 2017.
The tax amnesty which comes to an end on July 31st this month allowed tax payers an obligation with ZRA without being subjected to penalties.
ZANIS reports that ZRA Assistant Director Tax Payer Services Deborah Bwembya says his Authority will not extend the period because the tax payers had been given adequate time to settle their debts.
“Unfortunately we won’t extend the period, we have taken note of your appeal but we had given you enough time to settle all your queries but you did not do that,” she said.
She said this during a stakeholders review meeting held at Edinburgh hotel in Kitwe on Friday.
Ms. Bwembya said there was,therefore, need to change the mindset for clients on the compliance to paying tax to allow the smooth flow of business.
“ The authority has observed that there was much reliance on tax agents by the business community who sometimes did not know what to do therefore delaying the process at the authority, ‘’ she said.
Ms. Bwembya said the system was also flooded and needed to ensure that they ease pressure to allow everyone benefit from the tax amnesty hence the need to avoid sending agents that had no idea of the procedure.
The Director also added that poor tax compliance by the clients had led to huge penalties because of late payment hence they can lobby for a reduction from the community.
“Some of you have magnitude of payments because you never used to pay, you don’t comply to the tax payment and you end up blaming us,” she said.
She has since emphasized that ZRA will work with anyone in tax administration adding that the Authority remains eager to listen and hear the concerns raised.
Kitwe District Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KDCCI) president Allan Nyirenda says the Tax amnesty policy had positively brought in a lot of tax awareness among the business community.
Mr. Nyirenda says the industry was happy with the initiative by ZRA to impact more knowledge to the clients so as to improve their business skills in the business sector.
“We are happy for this initiative from ZRA it has really given a positive impact on the business community to give them awareness and knowledge on tax and tax amnesty,” he said.