The Prime Minister of Uganda, Dr Ruhakana Rugunda told Parliament yesterday that government is in the process of reviewing the highly controversial taxes on social media and Mobile Money that were implemented earlier this month.
Below are the submissions of Prime Minister Rugunda on the floor of Parliament verbatim
Rt. Hon. Speaker I present this statement under rule 5l (1) of our rules
Rt.Hon. Speaker and Hon.Colleagues, as you are all aware; there has been a lot of public discussion about the recently introduced taxes on Mobile Money transactions and over the Top Services (OTTs) commonly known as social media.
Rt.Hon. Speaker and Hon. Colleagues, the Excise Duty (Amendment) Bill 2018 was presented to this August House, debated and passed by this Parliament. lt was subsequently assented to by His Excellency the President and consequently became an Act of Parliament.
The Act imposes a lo/o Levy on receiving, payments and withdraws through mobile money platforms. ln addition, it imposes a specific charge of Uganda Shillings 200 on over the top (OTT)
services per day of access.
Rt.Hon.Speaker and Hon. Colleagues, since the Act came since the Act
came into force on 1st July 2018; Government has noted public concerns regarding some of the elements in implementation of especially tax on mobile money transactions and OTT.
H.E. the President has provided guidance on the matter and encouraged further discussion with a view to reaching consensus on how we should raise the much-needed revenue to finance our budget and undertake the development agenda we have set for ourselves
without causing unbearable burden to the citizens.
Rt.Hon. Speaker and Hon. Colleagues,
Government is now reviewing the taxes taking into consideration the concerns of the public and its implications on the budget.
The review is being expedited to ensure that Government presents an
Amendment of the Excise Duty (Amendment) Act 2Ol8 to this House
for debate on Thursday next week (lpttr July 2018) Hon. Members
will, therefore, have the opportunity to debate and consult widely so
as to make an appropriate decision during the consideration and
debate of the Amendment Bill.
Rt Hon. Speaker and Hon Colleagues,
I would like to assure Parliament that Government is committed to
ensuring that tax on mobile money and OTT are designed taking into
account the public concerns and balancing the need to raise revenue
to finance our development priorities.