President Weah Launches Mobile Money Tax Payment Scheme; Makes History as First User
President Weah using his mobile phone to pay his real estates taxes
Monrovia, Liberia: President George Manneh Weah has officially launched the Mobile Money Tax Payment Scheme initiated by the Liberia Revenue Authority (LRA). The initiative is aimed at alleviating the bottlenecks and stress often endured by taxpayers in meeting their tax obligations.
The program also seeks to aid government succeeds in developing the country through ‘Domestic Revenue Mobilization’ to avoid dependence on foreign aid. The launch took place on Thursday, April 12, 2018, at the Monrovia City Hall.
Speaking during the ceremony, the Liberian leader frowned on the non-compliance posture of some Liberians in paying their taxes; thereby denying government needed resources to embark on its developmental initiatives.
President Weah Greets LRA Commissioner General at the Ceremony
According to President Weah, most Liberians are noted for not paying their taxes to government. He said the situation has created difficulties for past administrations in the implementation of major development projects in the country.
“We have money in Liberia, but we are not giving it to government for development; We must start to give to the government through the payment of our taxes so that we stop blaming the government for not developing the country,” President Weah told the gathering. He therefore, called on Liberians to begin adapting the culture of giving their monies to the Government of Liberia, through the payment of legitimate taxes for the development of the nation.
The Liberian leader said it is unhealthy for the country, when Liberians ignore tax commitments. President Weah said what is required is to make domestic tax payment schemes encouraging; that will make the payment processes easier to convince people to come forward and pay their taxes.
President Weah admonished the LRA not to “run behind tax payers” or close down their businesses when they are not-compliant, rather encourage them to pay their taxes. He said the best thing to do is to make the tax payment process user-friendly, like we are doing with the launching of the LRA Domestic Tax Payment Scheme through Mobile Money.
Historically, President Weah has become the first Liberian to utilize the scheme when he paid his domestic property tax through the exercise. He then expressed gratitude to the LRA for the Mobile Money Domestic Tax Payment Scheme.
Earlier, LRA Commissioner General, Mrs. Elfrieda Stewart Tamba described taxes as the bedrock of development all over the world. She said the Mobile Money Payment Scheme will now make the payments of taxes comfortable and encouraging to all. The payment of domestic taxes via the Mobile Money Tax Payment Scheme as endorsed by the LRA is to avoid taxpayers queuing in long lines to pay their taxes.
She also commended USAID, the United Bank for Africa, Orange and Lone Star Communications Networks, the Central Bank of Liberia and development partners for supporting the process.