Monday, April 22, 2013
300 SHOP TRADERS REFUSED TO PAY NEW TAX
FROM TANZANIASASA REPORTER
MORE than 300 shop traders in Arusha city trading along the local minibus stand have refused to pay a new rent tax imposed by the council , claiming that the the recent new agreement is not legally valid and the tax is too high to afford.
Through their union meeting which was held yesterday the traders said the municipal tax raised from Shs 60,000Tsh to TShs 275,000 without their views or negotiation was is illegal and it is against the spirit good governance policy in the country
The General Secretary of the traders and shop owners association Melance Kisoka said both the new tax and the agreement are illegal and show a secret motive of the council to steal their shops which they built at their own costs.
“How can this be possible to inflate tax beyond deadly proportion, is it really our government doing all these to us ,they want our children to starve and fail to go to school, this is our means for survival we will fight until justice is done “Said Kisoka
He said his association members have never refused to pay council taxes but participation and negotiation are the key matters to dictate how much should be paid regarding on their business environment.
He said the council distributed new rent agreement to the traders forcing them to sign the new agreement before Wednesday this week something that has terribly shocked the traders.
Kisoka said that the new contract has not laid down some important facts one being the clear indication of the premises ownership and also its period is too shot leading to failure of business plans and don’t comply with financial and loaning institutions the country.
Another trader interviewed by this paper Abraham Chipaka said that the move is dirty tricks of the municipality of the city to grab their shops which they tokk loans from banks and build more than 15 years ago.
"This is a sign of rejection to majority poor for the interest of the few rich and in power, we will use every means possible to retain our properties and our constitutional right to be heard and given our right as bonafide citizens of this country “He said
On her part Betty Manjira lamented on the municipal move to impose new and high taxes saying there is no any services at the center including toilet service, water and other important services
“In other countries of the World people enjoy paying taxes because they see what their money has done in terms of development projects and improved services but here in our Municipal is totally different ,they collect and probably all disappear we have to change this culture by addressing issues like these “She said
Tito Isaac Zumba contributing to matter said they were given permission by the town council 1994 in an agreement which has not shown that the premises erected belongs to the authority their fore in his vew they are entitled to pay for land rent.
Dominick Mollel said it was a big surprise to see the municipality seeks to take away a their stores instead of helping them to develop their businesses to fasten development in the sector in creation of self employment for the better of the country and its people.
“I wonder why they want to steal in the day light ,surprisingly some other traders of Krokon area have been given shops which constructed by the council free ,there is a political move here, we will stand to deny to the fullest “Said Mollel
Commenting on the matter Levolosi ward Councilor Ephata Nanyaro supported entrepreneurs urging them to claim their rights anywhere without fear
He further said the full council meetings have never passed any bill to increase or impose new taxes to Stand Ndogo traders
Asked about the issue Acting Director of Arusha Council Lamsy Afwilile maintained that his council acted under lawful directives and promised to convene a press conference to elaborate the matter in full details.