TRA Director for Tax Payer Services and Education, Richard Kayombo made the statement in Dar es Salaam when briefing journalists on the ‘door to door’ campaign going on at different regions countrywide.
“More traders are now paying taxes because we are approaching them in a friendly way, they can also face our officers and raise their concerns; they no longer fear us,” said Kayombo adding they have embarked on a new campaign to educate Tanzanians on the important of paying taxes for the country’s development.
“Reports from our managers shows an increased number of identified tax payers; the number includes those paying their tax arrears,” he added.
According to him, the campaign has so far been conducted in Geita, Kinondoni, Arusha, Dodoma, Singida, Pwani, Mtwara, Mbeya and Mwanza regions. He said TRA officers are now conducting the campaign in Kilimanjaro, Ilala and Temeke.
Kayombo said the campaign will be sustainable targeting to increase the number of tax payers. He said campaign will promote voluntary tax paying habits amongst Tanzanians. He promise to release data and the amount of taxes collected during the campaign immediately as the new financial year begins.
“We are opening all the time; we have been receiving complaints and work on them within five days as per our customer care guidelines,” he said calling upon TRA’s regional and district managers to adhere to the provided guidelines to reduce customer complaints.
He explained that decisions to launch the ‘door to door’ campaign was reached following tax estimation complaints from some dishonest TRA officials. He said during the campaign, TRA officers visit businesses to ensure proper tax estimation.
Kayombo added that when TRA officials visit traders they also inform the district, regional and loxcal government authorities to ensure smooth operations.
“The campaign has helped us to know some of the identified tax payers with Tax payer’s Identification Number (TIN) who are still assisted by our officers so that they start paying taxes accordingly,” said Kayombo.
Speaking after swearing in newly-appointed ministers and those who changed portfolios at State House Chamwino recently, President Samia Suluhu Hassan ordered tax authorities to stop frustrating businesses and harassing taxpayers, but devise strategies to expand the tax base to meet collection targets.
The president said tax collectors have been employing enforcement tactics that pushed traders to close shop. She said that vicious tax collectors take away tools of work from business people.