Firms that have not submitted their certified financial statement and have not given reason are likely to face a Rwf500,000 fine by the Rwanda Revenue Authority (RRA).
Large taxpayers are required by government to have their financial statements certified by professional accountants from the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Rwanda (ICPAR).
Information from RRA shows that only 60 percent met the deadline of December 31, 2009 which was an extension to the initial deadline of June 2009.
According to the Commissioner for Large Taxpayers, Celestin Bumbakale, 10 percent asked for extension while the remaining 30 percent have not communicated their reasons of delay.
The requirement for certification of financial statements is provided for by law No.16/2005 of 18/08/2005 on direct taxes.
It stipulates that failure to meet the deadline results into a penalty of Rwf500,000 for large tax payers.
Medium and Small tax payers are not affected by this law.
The major reason attributed to the failure to meet the deadline was the disorder within the ICPAR as tax payers said they were confused about who’s a qualified accountant.
This follows payement of certification fees to accountants who did not appear on the list that circulated within the business community. It is said that only firms that appeared on the new line-up were the only ones allowed to engage in business.
Certifying financial statements is also an international norm that has been embraced by all member states of the East African Community (EAC) to minimise errors in the taxpayers’ books of account.