The Kenya Revenue Authority has initiated post-Covid-19 measures to bring more people into the tax bracket and curb cheating and evasion, in a quest to meet its collection targets.
KRA plans to employ more than 2,000 additional officers to bolster its pursuit of tax cheats and has offered full or partial relief of penalties and interest on undisclosed taxes under the Voluntary Tax Disclosure Programme (VTDP).
Kenya Commissioner for Domestic Taxes Rispah Simiyu said taxpayers will now get full or partial relief of penalties and interest on undisclosed taxes for the past five years.
"The VTDP was introduced vide the Finance Act, 2020, which came into effect on January 1, 2021 and shall run for three years to December 31, 2023. The programme seeks to grant relief on penalties and interest on any tax liability disclosed in respect to the period of five years running from July 1, 2015 to June 30, 2020," Ms Simiyu said in a statement.
Taxpayers who take advantage of the programme will receive full or partial waiver of the penalties and interest, depending on the time of payment of disclosed taxes. Persons who make full payment of disclosed taxes in 2021 will get 100 per cent relief in penalties and interest, and those who pay in 2022 and 2023 will get relief at a rate of 50 per cent and 25 per cent respectively.
The KRA said VTDP applies to all tax liabilities accrued/derived in the specified period including individual Income Tax, Corporate Tax, PAYE, Withholding Income Tax, Capital Gains Tax, Value Added Tax, Withholding VAT, Excise Duty, Monthly Rental Income Tax and Turnover Tax.
In addition to the waiver of penalties and interest, a person granted relief under the programme will not be prosecuted for the disclosed tax liabilities. Those granted relief in accordance with the provision of the VTDP will not appeal or seek any other remedy with respect to the taxes, penalties and interest remitted by KRA.