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URA wants to confiscate MTN property over 327 billion shillings tax bill

The Uganda Revenue Authority has asked Court to let them have a deeper look and possibly punish leading telecommunications firm, MTN Uganda in an ongoing Shs326.9 billion tax claim case.

MTN CEO Wim Vanhelleputte addressing media and winners before flagging off the winners of 2016 MTN Women in Business awards who are travelling to south Africa

The standoff at the Commercial division of the High Court is due to an outstanding URA tax claim in mobile money tax owed to the Government of Uganda that spans over a period of four years beginning 2011. URA alleges that between the period under consideration MTN was declaring less earnings from mobile money and Airtime sales. And that as a result of the supposed under declarations, URA asserts, the telecom firm  ended up ‘dodging’ payment of a total of Ushs 326,996,917,906 to the national coffers.

MTN who lodged a lawsuit on December 7th 2016 through the eminent Kampala Associated Advocates lawyers; Oscar Kambona and Bruce Musinguzi have now (Wednesday) asked Justice Billy Kainamura for more time to reconcile the massive tax claim out of court. The South African-owned firm have overtime insisted that URA is subjecting them to double taxation and grounded on lack of knowledge on part of the tax collector as far as taxation of the business of mobile money and airtime is concerned.

“We are still carrying out some reconciliation with the respondent (URA) so we need more time,” Mr. Kambona submitted on behalf of MTN who has already secured an interim order stopping the tax collectors from  seize her money in banks.

URA through its lawyer Habib Arike insists that was given enough time (from November 2014 and November 2016) but has not paid the monies to date and thus making the government incur a great loss.

Justice Kaianmura has given them upto March 13, 2017 to report back with a common understanding.

The Ugandan.

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