Kawempe Councillors Petition Parliament Against Property Tax Rates

A team of Councillors meeting speaker of Parliament R.Kadaga

Kawempe Division Councillors have sought the support of Parliament in their fight against the property tax, which is set to be implemented by Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA).

The Property Rate, which is set to commence at the beginning of the Financial Year 2019/2020, has already generated controversy.

Last week, local media reported about a meeting between the KCCA Lord Mayor, Erias Lukwago, and the councilors, which had an ugly end after fallout on the rate to levy and the nature of property it should affect.

The Local Government Rating Act and the Kampala Capital City Authority Act are the enabling laws.

Currently, KCCA has placed the rate at 6 per cent per annum, which has since met extreme opposition from property owners.

Mr Ramadhan Lukwago, who read a joint petition on behalf of the group in a meeting with the Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga, on Thursday, 27 June 2019, said the tax should be stayed because its purpose is betrayed.

“When you ask them [KCCA], they say the tax is intended to raise money for the construction of roads in the city, health services provision and garbage collection…but we pay for our garbage, we don’t see the roads and there is no health centre worth the name,” said Mr Lukwago.

Lukwago’s opposition also stems from what he called inadequate and shallow consultations, claiming the tax was not only forced down the throats of residents, but that KCCA will not listen to disputes.

“The people of Kawempe are very much worried…we shall begin paying the tax but the disputes arising from the list and the valuation; we request that the tax is stayed until those issues have been sorted,” said Mr Lukwago.

Present was Kawempe North MP Latif Sebaggala, who said his role was limited to coordinating the meeting between the leaders and the Speaker, but is also known to loath the proposal.

Kadaga described the meeting as “revealing,” and said the issues raised will be shared with the leadership of KCCA.

“This is a serious issue, one that they [KCCA] cannot just look and determine without the input of the people; I am going to discuss this with Mr Kitaka [Ag KCCA Executive Director] and also share with the Ministers,” she said.

“All these anomalies have to be corrected,” she added.

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