DC stops levies charging for traders with IDs

09Jul 2020
The Guardian
DC stops levies charging for traders with IDs

​​​​​​​RUNGWE District Commissioner Julius Chalya has directed leaders in the district to stop charging levies from small traders who have special Identity Cards.

​​​​​​​RUNGWE District Commissioner Julius Chalya.

According to Chalya, authorities should be aware that any entrepreneur with a capital of less than 4m/- is eligible to get the ID.

Chalya made the directives here after receiving several complaints from traders at Kiwira market that there were some government officials who harass them including beating them to pay levies even if they have the IDs.

He reminded officials to uphold high moral standards when serving small scale traders which include respecting their activities.

“It is against rules to force the trade to pay other levies and taxes while they have already paid for the annual ID fee of 20,000/-. Any leader who is doing this should stop immediately, we have to let our petty traders conduct their activities freely,” Chalya said.

Nuru Mwaituka, a rice trader at Kiwira said that they are usually being forced to pay high levies which they cannot afford.

“The leaders sometimes bar us from entering the market if we fail to pay the charges, we have to spend several hours outside the gate just because we cannot afford to pay the multiple levies and taxes,” Waituka said.

For his part, Fadhiri Sanje, one of the traders at the market said that they are usually forced to pay 15,000/- as levy for one tonne of cargo which is too high for them to afford.

“We have been selling our products at high prices due to the levies, this situation makes us lose customers and thus end up incurring losses,” Sanje added.

He called on the District Commissioner to intervene as the situation has affected a number of traders whereby most of them have lost their businesses due to lack of capital.

“We have witnessed some traders closing their shops with others moving to other places. Majority of traders have changed their businesses and they are now conducting their activities in informal areas,” Sanje explained.

Late 2018, President John Magufuli launched the programme to provide vendors and small-scale entrepreneurs with special taxpayer ID cards which he printed in efforts to expand the tax base in the country.

When handing over the cards to regional commissioners, he charged the leaders to ensure proper distribution of the cards.

The ID cards will be renewable annually and are available at a price of 20,000/-. Anyone running a business with a maximum profit turnaround of 4m/- is eligible to have one.