from MARCUS MUSHONGA in Harare
HARARE – THE Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (ZIMRA) has blamed the congestion at the border with South Africa to clients deliberately falsifying declaration submissions under pre-payment and pre-clearance facilities.
ZIMRA disclosed it has as of Thursday (September 10) recovered revenues amounting to US$6,1 million. These revenues would have been lost to the rampant leakages at the border.
“ZIMRA regrettably wishes to acknowledge and confirm inquiries from the media and members of the public that there has been avoidable congestion at our Beitbridge border post,” the agency’s spokesman, Francis Chimanda, stated.
During the coronavirus (COVID-19) lock down ZIMRA introduced pre-clearance and pre-payment facilities for consolidated trucks (omalayithsa) to facilitate importation of food and essential imports by private individuals using these transporters.
This facility has always been available for commercial imports.
“However, random spot-checks and physical inspections have shown that the quantities, price points of imported materials have been falsely declared,” Chimanda stated.
“(This is) defeating the purpose of Pre-payment and Pre-clearance, which is intended to ensure smooth clearance and facilitation of movement of people and goods.”
ZIMRA stated it had been forced to enforce the law by searching all the above-mentioned trucks.
The agency assured in instances where corruption, smuggling and illegal activities were occurring, it would use its authority as provided for in the laws of
Zimbabwe to ensure that the nation was not prejudiced through revenue leakage.
“We therefore call upon all who are transporting and importing goods into the country to comply with the law and use the facilities provided to facilitate trade and travel.”
Beitbridge is the busiest border post in Sub-Shaharan Africa.
– CAJ News