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Citizen Weekly

Sunday 31 August 2014


Kenya Revenue Authority is on the neck of its chief manager at Kilindini port after the tax collector fell short of meeting the intended target this quarter.

The chief manager Kenneth Ocholla last week openly shed tears when he received a memo informing him to show the reason why the authority should not have him fired after KRA fell short with Sh7billion in this quarter.

It is the first time since the tax collector had such a huge deficit in any given quarter and the chief manager might as well have broken the record in registering lowest ever revenue as the in charge Kilindini.

The manager, according to his juniors, developed unfriendly mood throughout last week since he had no answer to give to his Times Towers bosses in Nairobi upon receiving the letter said to have been fuming and already planning for his replacement envisaged to take place this week.

It is said that the manager did not advise his bosses a few weeks ago on who to transfer and who not to, when the authority moved 300 graduate officers who were knowledgeable with many tax collection skills.

The transferred officers were taken out to border stations with no real tax collection points as was the case in Mombasa where they helped the enforcement department collect revenue and met their targets.

Those who were left to carry out the sensitive revenue collection docket according to our sources are the old guards who are remaining with only two or three years to retire and  many of whom were messengers, drivers and junior clerks who have no idea how to log into a computer or carry out thorough duty valuation.

Most of these old guards are said not even to be able to calculate simple basic valuation tools like CPRS which calculates duty on imported motor vehicle duty.
They have no idea of the valuation matrix as their graduate colleagues had it all in their skills and to an extent; many could not even fathom the Simba System, but were able to do simple reporting only.

It is now dawning on those who masterminded the transfers of the 300 officers sent to various borders in the country to tackle smuggling that not all is well. Many of the officers sent to various border points, are languishing at border police stations unable to go carry out their duties, for fear of armed smugglers, while no arrangements have been done for them to get backup from the police force.
Meanwhile, in Mombasa, a new breed of young girls has replaced all the heads of verifications officers who were also transferred to border control points. However, the digital girls are said to be busy chatting online with the outside world during office hours and clubbing at night enjoying Mombasa to their fullest and have nothing to do with tax collection.

The cluster managers are already wondering how the sensitive positions were given to the young girls, if the authority was serious with revenue collection targets in each quarter.

Somewhere at Panafric Hotel in Nairobi, some senior KRA Commissioners hellbent at seeing the downfall of the Commissioner of Customs Services, were celebrating the Sh7 billion deficit saying it was all they required to have the much feared commissioner sidelined.

The Commissioner of Customs Services had sealed several loopholes that were in the past used to loot revenue by other commissioners who aided wealthy tax evaders in the country, many of whom were in partnership with the said commissioners who have always viewed Commissioner Memo to be a threat to them.

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