KENYA REVENUE AUTHORITY GOES DIGITAL

KENYA REVENUE AUTHORITY GOES DIGITAL

By Donald Kogai

To safeguard taxpayers during the COVID-19

pandemic, Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA)

continued establishing measures to support

taxpayer access to all essential services online.

To this end, KRA has introduced online

Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) sessions.

The ADR sessions can now be held,

uninterrupted through virtual facilities.

The facilities bring together the taxpayer, the

assessing Commissioner and a facilitator who

chairs the session as would happen in a face to

face ADR session.

This means that taxpayers with disputes can

still be heard and get solutions without

physically attending ADR sessions.

The online session is cost effective and

convenient to taxpayers as it covers a larger

geographical area with the option of multiple

individuals at different locations dialling in.

The Deputy Commissioner for Tax Dispute

Resolution Ms. Rispah Simiyu observed that,

“KRA can now connect with taxpayers and their

agents from the comfort of their offices or

homes through video/teleconferencing

technology applications such as Zoom, Skype

or Google hangouts to ensure business

continuity, whilst keeping the safety and

security of these platforms in mind.”

Ms Simiyu further observed that “KRA has not

been left behind in the use of technology as a

business continuity model.

We encourage parties with tax disputes, i.e.

assessing Commissioners and taxpayers

together with their agents to continue engaging

virtually under the ADR framework.

ADR is cost effective, presents an opportunity

for faster resolution of tax disputes, improves

compliance and preserves the relationship

between the disputants”

ADR was rolled out in June 2015 to

complement litigation by providing amicable

and timely settlement of tax disputes.

Since its roll-out, ADR has seen an increase in

efficient and amicable settlement of disputes.

The 2018/2019 financial year saw the sharpest

spike in ADR applications where 502

applications were received.

Of the 502 applications received, 237 cases

with a revenue yield of Kshs8.102 billion were

successfully resolved.

This was a phenomenal improvement

compared to the 2017/18 Financial Year where

90 cases were resolved with a revenue yield of

Kshs 3 billion.

An analysis of the number of resolved cases in

the two financial years indicates an increase of

147 cases, which translates into a 263 per cent

increment.

Apart from the number of cases, the resulting

revenue implication has been equally

enormous.

A revenue increase from Kshs 3 billion in

2017/2018 Financial Year to Kshs 8.102 billion

in 2018/2019 Financial Year is definitely no

mean feat.

The increase in the number of applications and

resolution rate indicates that ADR has

increasingly gained acceptance, traction and

public confidence thereby becoming a preferred

avenue for tax dispute resolution.

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