Irate business persons in Malawi’s northern border district of Karonga staged a street protest on Wednesday against “the strange conduct” of Malawi Revenue Authority officials of collecting tax for imported goods from shop to shop since July.
The business people who sell clothes from Tanzania closed their shops and forced ever one to close their shops as they were going to give a petition to the district commissioner on the conduct , saying they feel they are being robbed of their hardly earned money on the new system revenue collection.
Chairperson of Karonga Market Goodwin Ng’ambi told Nyasa Times that MRA officials visited all shops at the market that sell Tanzanian mechandize known as Matayifa counting each and every item.
He said those who were failing to mention the amount of money they paid to custom officers at the border were forced to pay huge amount of money or close their shops.
“We have agreed that we give our grievances to the District Commissioner on the new conduct of MRA officials on how they are collecting their revenue,” said Ng’ambi.
He said some shops owners were even forced to pay K200 000.
“They were doing this while we already paid the revenue at the borders. We tried to give them lists of the materials we are selling but they did not listen to us. We are very much surprised because in July they came again to count every item and charged us.
“In August they also came but when we ask them if the constitution has changed they are not telling us the truth so now we are demanding justice on the issue,” worried Ng’ambi.
Ester Kawonga who has a shop in Matayifa concurred with Ng’ambi saying: “at our shop we have been charged K100 000 and we tried to talk to them that not every item in the shop is a new stock but they did not listen to us until they forced us to close the shop.”
She said the most surprising thing is that when closing the boarders they give revenue to MRA “and now they also want the money from us we really need an explanation from.”
Geoffrey Mkandawire who represented the district commissioner agreed having received the petition.
Karonga MRA officials the Public Relations Officer of the tax body will going to make a statement.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :