TRA chief explains Salma Kikwete consignment riddle

06Dec 2016
The Guardian Reporter
The Guardian
TRA chief explains Salma Kikwete consignment riddle

TANZANIA Revenue Authority (TRA) commissioner general Alphayo Kidata yesterday shed more light on a consignment of goods imported by former First Lady Salma Kikwete that was claimed to be stranded at the port of Dar es Salaam over non-payment of taxes.

Alphayo Kidata

Kidata said Mama Kikwete, through her non-profit organisation WAMA Foundation, imported a consignment of 11 books that were levied a total tax of 148,921/-.

The TRA boss gave the breakdown of the taxes paid as customs processing fees (42,483/-) and railway development levy (106,438/-).

WAMA Foundation made full payment of the taxes due and cleared the consignment on August 10 this year, he said.

"We (TRA) would like to clarify that the reports published by some newspapers recently claiming that the books were put on a list of goods that were up for auction for non-payment of customs duties are false," Kidata stated.

He added that due to the nature of the goods (school books), customs tax and value added tax (VAT) were not levied, meaning that WAMA Foundation as a non-governmental organisation (NGO) did not need to apply for any tax exemption.

President Magufuli on Sunday denied ordering a tax crackdown on former president Jakaya Kikwete and his family, as claimed by some local media outlets.

Magufuli, who has led a tough, all-encompassing tax evasion crackdown since assuming the presidency just over a year ago, trashed the allegations against Salma Kikwete's WAMA Foundation as mere untruths.

According to a State House statement, the president was “very saddened by (the) malicious lies” being made to “tarnish the image” of ex-president Kikwete and his family.
"President Magufuli has never seized nor ordered the confiscation of Mama Salma Kikwete's goods," the statement said.

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