November 18, 2015 By Jariatu S. Bangura
All Peoples Congress Member of Parliament representing constituency 65 in the Tonkolili district yesterday urged Minister of Finance and Economic Development to increase Pay As You Earn (PAYE) marginal tax, adding that a 5% increment was unfair to Sierra Leoneans earning more than two million Leones.
In her contribution to the debate on the 2016 Budget which was tabled in Parliament on 6 November, Hon. Mabinty F. Fornah urged Dr. Kaifala Marah to consider increasing the tax instead of leaving it at 5%.
“I am proposing that all Sierra Leoneans earning from Le2million to Le10million should be rated 35% and from Le10million to Le15million 40%. This will help earn more thresholds for the government,” she said.
She, however, cautioned the government should make judicious use of tax payers’ money as such would motivate others to pay taxes to take care of public assets and liabilities.
Hon. Fornah commended the National Revenue Authority (NRA) for doing a great job in revenue collection for government, but urged the revenue agency to go after tax defaulters, especially small business entities.
Also, Chairman of the Committee on Finance, Hon. Hassan Sheriff noted that the budget represents the action plan of the government, and urged that it be relayed correctly to the people.
“Let us put aside party politics and debate the budget with an open mind as lot of changes are needed in most of the sectors, especially education, energy and health sectors,” he said.
He said the 2016 budget covers a lot of things as compared to the 2015 document which laid emphasis on the deadly Ebola crisis.
Meanwhile, Hon. Sheriff urged Internal Auditors and Financial Officers in ministries, departments and agencies, and in Local Councils to correctly report on their activities to the Director of Internal Audit Unit in the Ministry of Finance.