ZRA to prosecute dubious importers of heavy duty vehicles

By Staff Reporter

The Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) will prosecute owners of heavy duty vehicles dubiously imported into the country through the misapplication of the Value Added Tax (VAT) deferment scheme.

ZRA public relations manager Topsy Sikalinda said the owners of the first batch of 460 vehicles believed to have been imported dubiously were given a 14 days grace period within which to appear before the Inspectorate and Customs Enforcement (ICE) unit of ZRA.

“Unfortunately, very few appeared hence, the Authority has immediately issued a RED ALERT on all these vehicles with the Road Transport and Safety Agency (RTSA), Zambia Police and other security wings to ensure they are impounded and the owners are taken to court for prosecution. So far, only 262 owners have appeared before the Authority under the first batch of 460 published vehicles in the press. K9.2 million was assessed as principal taxes out of which K1.4 million has already been paid,” he stated.

Sikalinda said the 136 clearing agents involved in the scam remain suspended while their Taxpayer Identification Numbers (TPINs) have been blocked on the AsycudaWorld System.

“Smuggling of goods through false declarations, transit fraud, mis-classifications, under-declarations, and under-valuations is a serious offence and offenders will be dealt with in accordance with the law. The Authority further urges all citizens to pay taxes directly to the Zambia Revenue Authority to avoid being swindled by smugglers pretending to be clearing agents,” stated Sikalinda.