NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 27 – The Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) is aiming to collect at least Sh1.2 trillion per annum by 2015 through the implementation of a three-year plan that emphasises modernisation, customer service and new revenue mobilisation initiatives.
Speaking at the launch of the 5th Corporate Plan, KRA Commissioner General John Njiraini said they intend to take major strides in technology by rolling out the second phase of the domestic taxes automation project, which will be introduced as a pilot in September.
“When this project is fully implemented by the end of the current financial year, we expect to have a versatile system for tackling some of our most intractable tax compliance challenges including effectively tracking taxpayer consistency in filing and payment of taxes and the monitoring of usage of ETR devices, among others,” he said.
“By the end of the Plan period, we anticipate to have in place a more effectively networked organisation, able to address tax compliance challenges in a more effective and coherent manner,” he added.
The KRA has been collecting revenue on behalf of the Government since 1995 in partnership with different stakeholders including individual taxpayers, government agencies and private sector players.
KRA Chairman Marsden Madoka said that in developing the 5th Corporate Plan, it was critical that all stakeholders were engaged and give an opportunity to contribute.
“The process included carrying out focused group discussions with KRA staff, reviewing key policy documents including the government’s budget policy statement and various surveys and policy documents,” he stated.
The Plan uses the theme “Achieving excellence in revenue administration and organisational renewal, innovation and staff capacity enhance for better customer focus”.
Njiraini said that they intend to create a more efficient and mission focused institution through their ongoing restructuring programme.
“We expect to have a flatter organisational structure with fewer decision making levels, which in itself should lead to speedier action and decision making,” he said.
“We expect to achieve better coordination of administrative functions that support revenue collection through the creation of the new division of Corporate Support Services,” he revealed.
The new division will consolidate independently managed roles which include finance, human resources, information and communication technology, procurement and administration and logistics.
“Consolidation of this nature will help greatly in freeing time for the Commissioner General to focus on KRA’s core business of revenue collection,” he said.
Njiraini added that they plan to emphasise staff issues including skills enhancement and culture change to address staff attitude towards taxpayers, quality consciousness and integrity.
“This is particularly important given that a recent independent study has highlighted culture change as a key imperative for the success of the KRA’s reform programme,” he said.
“We will establish a dedicated team to spearhead culture change and to monitor achievements and this will have far reaching implications through better customer service, fidelity to quality standards and resultant enhanced revenue yield,” he explained.
In the 4th Corporate Plan period from 2009 to 2012, the KRA implemented key reforms that proved very successful by investing in a professional team, deepening reforms and quality service delivery to enhance compliance.
The key achievements during this period include: expanding the scope of electronic services through the Integrated Tax Management System, increasing the number of Authorised Economic Operatiors, linking the KRA Customs Simba System to the Kenya Port Authority System, establishing customer service desks and achieving ISO 9001:2008 recertification.
However, Madoka noted that the key challenge facing the KRA is under funding saying that it poses an extremely serious risk to their ability to continue to carry out their mandate.
Minister for Finance Robinson Githae acknowledged that KRA’s lack of funding is unacceptable, and he reiterated that the Finance Ministry will take appropriate measures to assure that the Authority is adequately funded.