KRA gets back powers to pin down tax evaders

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The Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) has been reinstated the powers to get information from third parties on persons or organizations suspected to be tax cheats.

The ruling made last week requires organization like Safaricom to share M-Pesa records with KRA, banks to share clients’ records with the taxman. This will be done by KRA, all in an effort to match data from third parties showing the flow of money against tax payment in the race to pin down those that may be evading tax payments.

The powers are included in a section of the law that was frozen in 2018 but is now active, and those that will not comply with this order will face a fine of Sh 1million or a jail term of three years or both.

KRA’s Legal Service Commissioner, Paul Mutuku, said that the regulator will now freely be able to search and get hold of files from tax cheats.

“KRA’s could not interrogate or question the correctness of tax or duty declaration using third party data further than what had been declared by the taxpayer in the self-declaration form,”  he said.

Import records, bank statements, Kenya Power records, motor vehicle registration details, Kenya Civil Aviation Authority (KCCA) and water bills are some of the database KRA enforcement team has been using to smoke out persons and organization who own wealth but have been paying less taxes than they should be.

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Anthony Kiratu is the Founder of Finsolutions. He is a financial analyst with over 5 years experience in research, investment advisory, valuation and financial modelling. Anthony is a member of the Institute of Certified Investment and Financial Analysts and Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Kenya. He is passionate about development of African Capital Markets through training of investors and dissemination of information for sound financial and investment decision making process. He is also a part-time lecturer in the Certified Investment and Financial Analyst course in the subjects of International Finance, Portfolio Management, Equity Investment Analysis, and Fixed Income Securities. Email: anthony@finsolutions.co.ke Contact: +254 780216631

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