Dar es Salaam. Tanzania Revenue Authority (TRA) had by yesterday evening collected about Sh8.6 billion involving about 300 containers that were removed from the port before paying import taxes.
TRA said the amount was an increase of Sh2.866 billion from what the authority had collected from December 2 this year to date.
The amount was collected from S. S. Bakhresa company which paid about Sh2 billion, Tifo Global Trading Company Limited paid Sh310 million, IPS Roofing Company Limited Sh80 million, Red East Building Company Limited paid Sh100 million, Zing Enterprises paid about Sh325.6 million and Sapato N Kyando paid Sh50.5 million.
The move is in compliance with President John Magufuli’s seven-day ultimatum he gave last week to importers whose containers were taken from the port without paying taxes as required by the law.
“TRA continues insisting that any traders whose containers or cargo passed at Dar es Salaam port or crossed any border without paying tax to settle the debt within the remaining day of the ultimatum,” notes the TRA press release.
Traders who are yet to pay taxes have only three days to comply with the order of the head of state that was issued on December 4 this year when Dr Magufuli met the private sector at the State House in Dar es Salaam.
“When the deadline expires, TRA will robustly take legal action to ensure unpaid tax is paid,” said TRA.
Already about eight senior officials with TRA and one official with Azam Inland Container Deport had appeared in the Kisutu Resident Magistrate’s Court charged with economic sabotage that caused the loss of Sh12.7 billion in unpaid taxes to the government for the imported 329 containers.
The accused persons include TRA Commissioner for Customs and Excise Duty, Mr Tiagi Masamaki, TRA head of Customer Service Centre Habib Mponezya, head of Customs, Mr Burton Mponezya, TRA supervisor of Customs and Excise Duty at Azam ICD Ms Eliachi Mrema and the TRA senior Businesses analyst Mr Hamis Omary.
The scandal also left TRA Commissioner General Rished Bade suspended pending investigation into how the tax for the imported containers was not paid.
The President appointed Dr Phillip Mpango, the former executive secretary in the President’s Office (Planning Commission) acting TRA Commissioner General.
TRA calls upon the public to join hands by reporting to the top authority’s management any unfaithful TRA official who might cause disturbance.