Gulu | RedPepper Digital – Gulu City Council has phased out the physical collection of local revenue in favor of the online system following leaks that resulted in lower collections.
In fiscal year 2019/2020, the city of Gulu, then, a municipality planned to collect 4.8 billion Shs in local revenue but only achieved 1.6 billion Shs. During fiscal year 2020/2021, Gulu only collected 1.8 billion Shs out of the 4.7 billion Shs planned.
Geoffrey Oyoo, the chief financial officer of the city of Gulu, said the Integrated Revenue Management System (IRAS) – a web and mobile application makes it easy to register, assess, invoice and pay taxpayers .
He says the method of collecting physical receipts they used in the past was tainted with corruption and duplication of receipts by some city officials.
He says they have already seen improvements in taxpayer registration over the past few months and three weeks of using the app.
Alfred Okwonga, the mayor of Gulu city revealed that they have so far raised over Shs 1 billion in local income using the digital revenue collection system. He is confident that they will raise the 3.5 billion Shs projected for this fiscal year.
Patrick Ocira, founding member of the Gulu Homeowners Association, called on city council to focus on small businesses that are normally overlooked despite making a lot of money.
He also advised the council to borrow a leaf from the Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) to reward top taxpayers to motivate diligent taxpayers.
IRAS was developed with the support of the World Bank through the PPIAF Trust Fund. It was first tested in Nansana, Fort Portal and the town of Gulu. Currently, it is operational in Nansana, Fort Portal, Gulu, Amuria, Yumbe, Zombo and Adjumani.