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Oxygen 8 East Africa to Pay KRA Sh1.2bn Taxes

The Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) will receive Sh1.2 billion in taxes from an international communications firm, Oxygen 8 East Africa Limited after a Tax Appeals Tribunal’s ruled in favor of the taxman.

Oxygen 8 East Africa Limited had sought an extension to file an appeal out of time to contest its tax arrears which the tribunal dismissed.

The dispute dates back to KRA’s audit on the firm for July 2015 to February 2019 that raised an assessment of Sh1,185,596.692 withholding tax.

The company then filed a notice of appeal at the Tax Appeals Tribunal but failed to file a memorandum of appeal in time.

In June, the firm said its managing director was absent from the country and instructions were received by its tax agents after the expiry of time in an appeal to have time extended.

The taxman opposed the application arguing the firm failed to include a supporting affidavit and that the notice of appeal filed was invalid.

On September 11th, the tribunal ruled that its power to extend time is donated by Section 13 (3) of the Tax Appeals Tribunal Act.

Consequently the Tax Appeals Tribunal Act and the Tax Appeals Tribunal (Procedure) Rules 2015 require that for an application for an extension of time to be accepted, a party must meet the conditions such as absence from Kenya, sickness and any other reasonable cause, all of which  Oxygen 8 East Africa Ltd had failed to meet.

The tribunal concluded that the notice of appeal filed was invalid on the grounds that the firm had acknowledged and expressed commitment to pay Sh986,780,780,277 but had not entered into an arrangement with KRA to pay the sum at the time of lodging the notice.

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