During his 2020 budget speech, President Yoweri Museveni has continued to sound warning bells to corrupt officials in his government that have crippled the country’s development in terms of innovation.
According to Museveni, these corrupt officials have sucked the life out of innovators particularly scientists by begging them for money before approving their products, and he has said that this vice has been deeply rooted in tax collection body the Uganda Revenue Authority (URA).
Museveni mentioned this as he was decrying the low tax to GDP ratio which stands at 14%, something that is way below what most other African countries collect (up to 18%) annually, and went on to say that some western countries collect up 40% tax-to GDP. Museveni wants this to be fixed.
This is why he decided to change the leadership at URA in March this year, firing the then Commissioner General Doris Akol and replacing her with John Musinguzi Rujoki who is effecting more changes at the Authority.
Nearly two weeks ago, four commissioners namely; Dickson Collins Kateshumbwa, Henry Saka, Silajji Kanyesigye Baguma, and Samuel Kahima tendered in their resignations, and sources told us that they were implicated in a tax waiver in excess of Shs195 billion to Kansai Plascon during the company’s acquisition of Sadolin Paints in 2017.
“There has been a lot of corruption to URA, that one I have cleaned. Those young people who were given the opportunity of serving their country were doing their own things. They were begging and begging. We have dispersed them, and we will clean other sectors,” Museveni said.
The President said that he was happy for the Shs1.045 trillion that has been allocated for Uganda Development Bank (UDB) and he has urged manufacturers to go and get low-interest loans to fund their manufacturing activities.