Hon. Sidia Jatta, National Assembly Member for Wuli West constituency, has contended that the Department of Livestock is better suited to collect cattle tax. He maintained that Area Councils should let go of the responsibility for the Livestock Department.
Hon. Jatta made this call at the joint session of the Public Accounts Committee/Public Enterprise Committee of the National Assembly held recently.
According to him, ever since Area Councils were vested with the responsibility of collecting cattle tax, they have not provided the basic requisite services for cattle owners. He observed that the essence of paying tax is to enable people to have access to services they themselves could not otherwise provide.
He said: “This cattle tax is being collected by Area Councils for years, yet still no services. Cattle owners pay taxes and in turn put their hands in their pockets to provide medicines for their cattle. They require water and medicine.”
He argued that the cattle tax ought to be collected by an institution that is competent enough to provide the required services.
“This is a point which is of great concern to some of us. I think we have to be honest to ourselves. People do not pay taxes for the sake of paying taxes.
They pay taxes for services to be provided for them, services that they cannot provide for themselves,” he said, added, “What is necessary is for us to put hands together and work for the betterment of this country.”
Hon Jatta then urged the Department of State for Finance and Economic Affairs to come up with a bill to change the situation.