The Liberia Revenue Authority, the Government agency charged with the responsibility to collect government revenue has disclosed that it has collected over US$400 million domestic revenue since its establishment on July 1, 2014.
Disclosing this at a well-attended news conference in Monrovia yesterday, the head of LRA, Madam Afreda Stewart-Tamba said LRA succeeded in collecting an amount of US$491 million domestic revenue and is expected to collect balance US$17 million soon. The LRA boss added that external revenue will be collected in due course.
Madam Tamba disclosed that the entity has so far reported US$8 million to the Liberian Government. She said LRA was mandated to collect revenue on behalf of the Government of Liberia and is fully prepared to execute such mandate.
Madam Tamba dispelled information published in two local dailies recently that the entity is performing poorly since its establishment in last July of 2014.The papers also alleged that LRA could not account for US$4 million. But Madam Tamba described the reports as totally false and misleading.
She said funds collected by the LRA are accounted for contrary to the information published by the two local dailies against the entity.
“This is untrue; we sent a budget of US$15 million to the Executive but the Legislature approved US$13.1 million and this budget calls for salary payment, but due to budgetary constraints, we are paying housing and educational allowances to our Tax Collectors, ”Madam Tamba in reaction to the Newspapers’ report stated.
On allegation that employees’ allowances are being withheld by Management, Madam Tamba dispelled the information terming it as false and misleading also as the Management is providing housing and transportation allowances to its Rural Tax Collectorates in the various counties.
Contrary to report in the local dailies that resources of the LRA are being diverted by management, the head of the LRA, Madam Tamba clarified that her administration can account for every resources of the LRA.
Among other things, Madam Tamba said LRA is a transparent institution established by government to collect revenues on behalf of the government and as such she as head of the entity can in no way betray the level of trust reposed in her by government.
Challenging the Liberian media and the public, Madam Tamba stated, “You and the public must hold us accountable for whatsoever we do here.”