Rwanda Revenue Authority (RRA) has urged consumers to always ask for Electronic Billing Machines (EBMs) receipts for any transactions made as it strengthens efforts geared at ensuring traders and service providers use the machines.
Though the tax body introduced the use of EBMs about three years ago, many traders and service providers are still reluctant to embrace them. This has undermined RRA’s bid to improve tax collections. Therefore, officials believe that strengthening consumers’ role in promoting the use of EBMs for all VAT-registered businesses will help the tax collector meet their targets.
Emmy Mbera, EBM project coordinator at RRA, stressed the importance of taxes in the development of the country, saying it is an obligation that every Rwandan must meet as their patriotic duty.
Mbera was speaking during a consumer compliance campaign in Muhanga District on Tuesday. The event was part of the “Tombola Izihirwa” raffle campaign, under which customers can win prizes by using their receipt numbers to enter the promotion.
Mbera said the consumer compliance campaign is part of the strategies aimed at enforcing the use of EBMs by traders. He added that “Tombola Izihirwa” was introduced to train, encourage and motivate consumers to ask for EBM receipts.
“The consumer compliance awards are aimed at encouraging buyers to ask for receipts and be rewarded with prizes. Rwandans should understand their role in tax administration by asking for receipts for all their transactions,” Mbera said.
Consumers stand to win cars, motorcycles, flat screen TVs and smart phones, worth Rwf25 million during, the promotion.
To participate in the campaign, consumers can send their EBM receipt numbers to *800# using their mobile phones of any telecom firm.
Jean Marie Vianney Ntarwerero, a consumer from Ngororero who won a flat screen TV set, said he never used to ask for receipts whenever he bought goods.
He added that he only started to demand receipts recently after hearing about the raffle campaign. He said he sent about 30 SMSes before he won the “Tombola Izihirwa” prize.
Cecile Uwamahoro, a consumer from Muhanga, said she had not been asking for EBM receipts, but vowed to start doing so.
“It is good to sensitise us on such issues. Consumers must realise that when you buy anything, they are contributing to the development of the country,” Uwamahoro said.