The Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) halted plans to auction hundreds of containers after Commissioner General John Njiraini received a damning petition over possible internal collusion and illegal sale of containers, The Informer can authoritatively reveal.
Our investigations show KRA jointly with the Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) were scheduled to oversee the sale of overstayed containers due to non-payment of tax last Wednesday, July 17, 2018. Traders raised concerns that some KRA and KPA officials are colluding to sell their containers to third parties at throw way price and without their knowledge.
The unprecedented decision was made during an internal meeting held at KRA headquarters; Times Towers after the Commissioner General received the petition a day before the shelved public auction at port auction yard in Mombasa. Importers decried that high valuation imposed on the goods has seen their cargo detained attracting extra demurrage expenses.
“Whilst we are willing to pay reasonable charges, the Kenya Revenue Authority and the Port officials have now embarked on selling our goods by auction without looking into our complaints and reviewing their charges to enable us continue carrying on profitable business.” The petition by representative of Nairobi based business association Susan Kamau reads in part.
Insiders say KRA want get revenue due to government and to free the space in warehouses. In the appeal copied to Industrialisation, Trade and Cooperatives Cabinet Secretary Adan Mohamed and Kenya Port Authority Managing Director Catherine Mturi-Wairi, the petitioners blamed a group of cartel behind the push for to buy the goods cheaply.
They also blamed last year’s prolonged political environment, which they claim impacted negatively to all sectors of the economy. “Our prayer is that you kindly have KRA do a valuation of our cargo or merchandise and give us some rebate so that we can pay reasonable fee and take our goods.
If KRA officials are allowed to auction our goods in the manner they are doing, some of the businesses will be unable to withstand the losses and will close or go into bankruptcy.” The traders added.