Tax Administration need enhancement, demands ActionAID ZambiaCountry Director, Nalucha Nganga-Ziba
Thursday, 22nd September, 2022
TAX ADMINSTRATION NEED ENHANCEMENT-ACTIONAID
ACTIONAID Zambia has called for consensus among various stakeholders in lobbying for fair tax and improved service delivery to the education sector through sustainable financing.
In August 2022, ActionAid Zambia launched two studies namely “Assessing the Financing of Education and the Attainment of Sustainable Development Goal (SDG-4) in Zambia” and “An Analysis of the Zambian Taxation System”.
ActionAid Country Director, Nalucha Nganga-Ziba has since urged stakeholder to work together in ensuring fair taxes for the people. She said, in view of the recent International Monetary Fund (IMF) bailout package that the Zambian Government obtained, there is need to disseminate the findings from the research finding it conducted.
Ms. Nganga-Ziba said the project identified that globally, Coronavirus (covid-19) and historic underfunding of education have led to many children without access to public education.
To achieve SDG-4 about 97 percent of new resources for education should come from domestic resources and that shift requires a dramatic change in domestic dialogue on the financing of education.
Ms. Nganga-Ziba said, in Zambia years of corruption, tax evasion and avoidance, low taxpayer compliance and a large informal economy has led to challenges in our tax administrative system.
The tax education alliance brings together global tax justice and education actors to make a transformative breakthrough in the domestic financing of public education.
Centre for policy Trade and Development (CPTD) Head of Research Boyd Muleya said there were limited resources and data in Zambia towards taxi administration.
Mr. Muleya said tax holidays and incentives needed to be reviewed by the government as it was losing a lot of money.
Muleya specifically emphasizing on the need to recover some of the tax incentives that were given during the Covid 19 pandemic and to increase tax on tobacco, alcohol and sugar in Zambia.
Muleya recommended for the formalization of the informal sector in Zambia so that the income base for the Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) could be increased while stiff penalties employed on all tax offenders.
“We need to increase the tax base in order to reduce the burden on those that paying. Its only fair” he said.
Tax Justice expert Mtwalo Msoni over 60 percent of Zambia were living below the poverty datum line in Zambia. He said fair taxes should be paid by everyone as part of tax justice system.
Mr. Msoni said the principle of tax justice was that poor people should pay less tax than the rich or the affluent in society. He said the tax system should also be used as a means of distributing wealth among the people.
The local national partner implementing the tax education project include the Basic Education Teachers Union of Zambia, Zambia National Union of Teachers, Secondary Education Teachers Union of Zambia, CTPD, Zambia Tax Platform, Zambia National Education Coalition and the National Quality Education of Zambia.