‘We have staff at KRA who don’t work for gov’t’ – Ruto

By , K24 Digital
On Fri, 26 May, 2023 10:14 | 2 mins read
President William Ruto at KRA headquarters
President William Ruto at KRA headquarters. PHOTO/Courtesy

President William Ruto has accused a section of staffers at the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) of sabotaging tax collection efforts by the government.

Speaking after filing his annual tax returns at the KRA headquarters in Nairobi, Ruto accused the staff of aiding some people to evade taxes.

"Collusion, wanton bribe-taking and general corruption continue to pervade the operations of KRA. We would be collecting more money than we are collecting but we have staff at KRA who don’t work for the government but for themselves and other entities. They assist people to avoid paying tax," Ruto said.

According to the President, the taxman has been resistant to the introduction and upgrading of revenue administration technologies.

"It has also been noted that KRA has not embraced the deployment of efficient technologies to improve revenue performance. The resistance to the introduction and upgrading of revenue administration technologies is an emphatic signal of the corporate culture of the organisation, which suggests that arbitrary, opaque and fundamentally corruptible revenue collection methods are the preferred modus operandi," he said.

KRA compared to its peers

Ruto accused the taxman of being lacklustre as compared to its 'peers' who collect more taxes.

"We collect 15 per cent of our GDP, but our peers like South Africa collect 22 to 28 per cent of GDP. KRA should question why we only collect 15 per cent when South Africa gets 22 to 25 per cent. KRA has remained lacklustre in its performance," Ruto said.

The President also promised to use taxes collected prudently for service delivery.

"My office shall be responsible for ensuring effectiveness, efficiency, transparency, and accountability in the use of public funds. I am not threatening KRA staff but they must do better," he said.

"Although taxes are unavoidable, a government that seeks to mobilize tax revenues must inspire confidence that the tax administration will be fair, effective and efficient. This means that the revenue authority needs to be transparent, fair and accountable. It also means that the government is expected to be honest, and vigilant stewards of public resources."

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