Ojienda wants KRA decision on ‘Sh443m tax arrears’ quashed
On October 5, lawyer obtained temporary orders barring the tax agency from taking any action against him
Lawyer Tom Ojienda is fighting to block Kenya Revenue Authority from recovering Sh443 million in alleged tax arrears.
On October 5, he obtained temporary orders barring KRA from taking any action against him until a suit he filed is concluded.
Ojienda accused the taxman of unfairness. KRA, in a letter dated June 7, demanded payment of Sh443,631,900 from Ojienda as total tax due to it for 2009-16. But the lawyer says the claim is illegal and he should not be made to pay. In court documents, Ojienda says KRA has summed up all the money he has received since 2009.
He says they include unpaid bills, his clients’ money, proceeds from personal accounts to which he was paid salaries and other allowances. Ojienda says KRA treated the sum as his net taxable income.
He accuses the taxman of unlawfully subjecting his four bank accounts — three held at Barclays and one at Standard Chartered Bank — to taxation, which, he says, is in violation of his fundamental rights.
“I receive and keep clients’ money as statutory obligation and that money cannot be subjected to taxation,” Ojienda said.
He said it is unfair and unreasonable for KRA to seek claims on sums banked at his personal account.
Ojienda says it is unfair that he is required to provide communication and documents between him and his clients, which were covered by advocate-client privilege.
He says it was wrong for KRA to issue an amended assessment dated September 5, purporting to assess a total of Sh378 million as tax dues and payable for 2011-16, without giving him a chance to be heard and to produce supporting documents.