Deputy speaker of parliament, Rt. Hon Jacob Oulanya has instructed a parliamentary commission set to discuss the excise duty (amendment) Bill 2018, to consult all concerned parties especially mobile money vendors and students that use internet for research, before making a final; submission.
On Thursday afternoon, Matia Kasaija the Finance minister presented the Bill before parliament, after a cabinet decision on Monday to reduce tax on mobile money transactions from 1% to 0.5% and only on withdrawals.
However, cabinet and consequently the NRM parliamentary caucus agreed to stay the over the head tax, OTT at 200 shillings a day, despite submissions by students that they use some of the blocked sites for research. T
he law that came into effect on July 1 2018 was rejected by majority Ugandans forcing the president to recall it and seek further advice. The president then decided that the mobile money is reduced to 0.5% from the earlier passed 1%. This would later be discussed and agreed on by cabinet.
Cabinet asked the finance minister to present the bill before parliament today. This was done, and the deputy speaker told the committee considering it to discus and reach a decision as quickly as possible, since parliament cannot wait for the mandatory 45 days. “This matter will be handled quickly” Oulanya said.
He was responding to concerns by Hon. Roland Mugume and Latif Ssebaggala’s concerns on how long the process would take, and what would happen in the mean time.
“I urge the committee to interact with the people dealing in mobile money and all the other concerned parties so that we can debate this matter conclusively” the deputy speaker added.
On Tuesday, junior finance minister, David Bahati told the media that the amendment of mobile money tax will earn government a whooping 118 Billion shillings in the 2018/19 financial year.