At least 65 business men and women who were accustomed to black market business in the northern border town of Cyanika have officially declared their intensions to abandon the illegal trade and resort to contributing to the country revenue and tax base.
The group decided to form a cooperative dubbed “Cyanika Cross Border cooperative with an aim of contributing to the economy.
The cooperative was initially formed in 2012, with an initial contribution of Rwf650.000 from the members. Cooperative officials say that the move is expected to mobilize the business community to be proactive and hard working.
The group has also contributed Rwf120.000 to the Agaciro development fund, as a sign of active faith and commitment to the country’s development in the Northern Province.
Rwanda Revenue Authority (RRA) provincial representative, Fabien Narayibonye hailed the cooperative members and stated that this was a good example of patriotic citizens committed to the development of the country in a dignified way.
Cyanika sector leader, Jean Marie Vianney Nkanika, says that the local leadership will support the cooperative in all possibleways so that they can attain their goals and objectives.
According to the tax law, a taxpayer who commits fraud is subject to an administrative fine of two hundred percent (200%) of the evaded tax.
With exception to that penalty, the Tax Administration refers the case to the Prosecution service if the taxpayer voluntarily evaded such tax, like use of false accounts, falsified documents or any other act punishable by law.
In case of conviction, the taxpayer can be imprisoned for a period between six (6) months and two (2) years.
The Rwanda Revenue Authority and the National Police of Rwanda in September, 2012 signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) as a response to challenges faced by the tax administration in the enforcement of tax and customs laws, which is sometimes due to the nature of borders which are porous.