Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) has reported allegations of duty evasion by Mapeto DWSM (David White Head and Sons), Siku Transport and Karim Rido Electronics to Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA).
According to a letter that we have seen from HRDC, signed by the coalition’s Chairperson Gift Trapence, the companies in question have been importing finished products while declaring them as raw materials.
Trapence confirmed authoring the letter, further saying MRA Commissioner General John Biziwick acknowledged receipt of the tip from the coalition.
“It is further alleged that the same company has been importing new vehicle tyres and declares them as used tyres for retreading. It is alleged that this has been happening since 2014.The company is allegedly said to be owing MRA over K 2 billion of unpaid taxes.
“HRDC has also received allegations that Siku Transport has unsettled taxes amounting to K2 billion. Since 2014 there were some MRA officers allegedly who covered these unpaid bills. HRDC and the people of Malawi are thus requesting your office to look into these matters,” reads part of the letter.
MRA’s Head of Corporate Affairs Steven Kapalamula asked for more time to check with the Commissioner General’s office for the letter.
“I need to check with the Commissioner General’s office if we have received that letter. Call me after 5 o’clock,” he said.
However, an emailed response that we have seen from Biziwick indicated that the authority is already looking into some of the issues raised by HRDC.
“Thank you for the information. Actually some of these tax payers are already on our radar. This just reinforces the actions which are taking. We will keep you updated. Once again thanks for your patriotism,” reads the email.
Mapeto DWSM’s Producer and Suppliers Director Martin Mpata asked for a questionnaire, which he did not respond to until we went to press.
Efforts to speak to authorities from the other companies in question did not yield much.