Why improved revenue collection will steer the nation ahead

ONE of the success stories of implementation of the Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM) manifesto is the increase of the government revenue collection from an average of 850bn/- per month in 2015 to an average of 1.3tr/- in 2019.

The achievement has increased the government’s ability to implement development and strategic projects as well as provide social services to its citizens. Right now the government is working tirelessly in order to continue implementing the major development projects.

Some of the projects include Standard Gauge Railway (SGR), East Africa Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP), where after its completion the pipeline will transport crude oil from Uganda to Tanga, Tanzania.

Others are Julius Nyerere Hydropower Station, which Tanzania Electric Supply Company (TANESCO) is developing the 2.1 gigawatt hydropower plant on the Rufiji River and Isaka-Kigali Railway that will stretch from Isaka to Rusumo in Tanzania before connecting to Burundi and Rwanda and Uganda.

However the government also continues with other districts/councils projects that were implemented by the councils own sources fund and some by the government funds.

For example, in the 2021/22 financial year, councils were authorized to collect 863.85bn/- from their own sources, which is an increase of 48.94bn/- compared to 814.96bn/ budget for the 2020/21 financial year.

Until Februarythe councils collected a total of 586.07bn/- equal to 67.84 per cent projections of the 2021/22 financial year, the collection being an increase of 112.13bn/- compared to the collections of 473.94bn/- which collected on the same period in the 2020/21 financial year.

The increase in collections of revenues is due to the President’s Office ( Regional Administration and Local Government (PORALG) and local government authorities putting in place joint strategies for creating new sources of revenues, strengthening the existing ones and putting in place more revenue collection strategies.

In the same financial year, the government authorized a total of 331.08bn/- for implementation of the development projects through the councils’ own sources collections.

Up to February this year, a total of 216.11bn/-, equal to 65.27 per cent have been used for the implementation of development projects, which equal to 40/60 of 41 unsecured revenues based on councils categories.

All those funds that were set aside by the governments for implementations of those projects show the importance of the government to collect revenues so that it can use it for development projects and provision of social services.

Addressing the nation recently, during the swearing in of the regional commissioners and the heads of the government institutions, President Samia Suluhu Hassan insisted on the importance of the local government authorities and Tanzania Revenue Authority (TRA) to collect revenues/ taxes and use the same wisely.

However the Head of State said she was wondering to see some of the government’s funds forwarded to the councils are not used, while others are not being used as it has been directed by the government.

Currently under its slogan, ‘Kazi Iendelee’, the sixth phase government under the leadership of President Samia has assured the public that it will complete the remaining major development projects that were established by the fifth phase government, of which the current Head of State was the Vice President.

She was quoted as saying that her aim towards leading the country is to see those projects completed according to its schedule; therefore the subordinates of President Samia must ensure that they put her shoes to ensure that projects are completed on time.

However, they must ensure that they are collecting the revenues for the local councils and the central government so as to use them in the projects implementations and other government business. Without seriousness in collecting revenue and taxes, implementation of those development projects will be inevitable and thus development projects completion will be delayed.

The main purpose of collection of the government funds is to meet public expenditure, repay loans, which is another huge source of government revenue from borrowing, where the government can secure loans internally or externally.

Every leader from village level up to the national level must ensure that they support efforts taken by the government in collecting and using wisely those funds for the betterment of the country’s developments. Let us join the President’s efforts for our better future.

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