BUJUMBURA April 5th (AP) – Domestic resource mobilization is a topical issue and a concern for all development actors, as disclosed on Tuesday March 3, 2018 in Bujumbura by Mr. Adelin Ntanonga, Director of policies and programs at the NGO Action aid, during a conference-debate on the role of journalists and the media in the mobilization of internal resources, co-organized by the NGO Action aid and the Citizen Initiative for the Environment and the sustainable development (ICED) association.
He pointed out that the combined effects of the international economic and financial crisis have put a strain on the capacity of developing States to raise sufficient resources to invest in the provision of public services and in economic interventions that bring economic growth.
Burundi, he added, has long relied on donors and loans to finance its development. However, it realizes that today the market no longer works optimally to generate stable revenue, while international solidarity continues to crumble, he continued. To do that, Ntanonga explained that the Government of Burundi and its partners agree that one of the sustainable channels for generating budgetary resources is to mobilize domestic fiscal resources. This is the best way to make the State capable of functioning and investing in the public services that people need.
According to Ntanonga, disturbing practices undermine the credibility of governments and the capacity of their States to channel sufficient resources for their development. Research conducted in several countries, he revealed, also highlights major challenges of our time for all tax administrations. That is particularly that which is linked to the leakage of taxable resources. Indeed, he lamented, anonymous shell companies and powerful elites are continually developing legal spaces or developing techniques to drain billions of dollars from the world’s poorest countries to tax havens, implanted around the world.
On his part, the ICED’s deputy legal representative, Mr. Apollinaire Nishirimbere, makes a strong appeal to all stakeholders, including the Government of Burundi, to fund an independent inquiry to see if the State is not in the process of lose money for these tax havens, tax evasions or frauds, unnecessary tax exemptions or other harmful tax practices by Offshore and other companies. Mr. Nishirimbere also called on the Burundi government to support the efforts of some associations to disseminate encouraging messages of financial independence through tax system and civic fiscal education in Burundi.
Moreover, he pointed out that only taxes can effectively finance the development of the country. Foreign aid, according to him, is sometimes poisoned gifts. For him, only the tax system can define the sovereignty and independence of a country. It also plays a leading role in defining some freedoms, including freedom of expression and other fundamental rights, he concluded.