Malawi Revenue Authority for Good Service Delivery.
Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) says various modernization initiatives are being implemented to address challenges faced by taxpayers.
MRA Board Chairperson, Vizenge Kumwenda, made the remarks during the launch of the Taxpayer’s Charter on August 29, 2022, at Mount Soche Hotel in Blantyre.
Kumwenda outlined that delayed services, poor communication, lack of information, and solicitation of personal services charges are among the challenges faced by taxpayers when dealing with MRA and other agents on the supply chain.
With the launch of the Charter, Kumwenda said it will help to cultivate and strengthen the confidence that taxpayers have in the tax administration system, while simultaneously building a new relationship with taxpayers based on mutual trust and respect.
“The Charter will enhance integrity and good governance within the Authority. As the principal revenue collection agency, the MRA Board understands that integrity is fundamental to maintaining public trust and confidence in the tax system,” he said.
“The Charter will strengthen transparency, which is the fourth core value of MRA. The Charter spells out our commitment, expectations, and service standards. We are now operating in an open manner, and hence we will ensure that information is available that can be used to measure the Authority’s performance and guard against any misuse of power,” said Kumwenda.
He also highlighted that, for the taxpayers to enjoy all those numerous rights, there are obligations placed on and required of them. Under the Charter, taxpayers are expected to be truthful and cooperative in their dealings with the tax collector.
He has, however, urged taxpayers across the country to become acquainted with the taxpayer rights, obligations, and service standards outlined in the Charter, while also encouraging them to demand what is due to them in accordance with the standards and commitments.
“Do not live in darkness, demand what is due to you according to the standards and written commitments. We must always bear in mind that the taxes we pay in this country are used for the provision of social services and development projects. These include buying medical supplies, constructing and maintaining better roads that we use time and again, hiring, training, and paying public service officers, and building new schools, among others,” Kumwenda said.
MRA Commissioner General John Biziwick observed that the launch of the taxpayer charter will help improve service delivery.
He said the charter is made up of eleven taxpayer rights, including the right to impartial treatment, the right to accurate and complete information, the right to quality taxpayer service, and many others.
“The Charter also covers nine taxpayer obligations. We expect the taxpayer to register, keep records, file tax returns on time, pay on time, and declare their tax affairs truthfully, just to mention a few,” Biziwick said.
Anord M’bwana, representing the Malawi Confederation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry, says the Chamber is pleased with the launch of the taxpayers’ charter because it will help taxpayers understand their rights and obligations.
“It is pleasing to have the Taxpayers’ Charter finally launched and, having browsed through it, one can easily understand the rights and obligations of a taxpayer, which is necessary for the mutual benefit of taxpayers and the Authority,” M’bwana said.