HomeKRAKeroche woes: Tabitha Karanja failed to file tax returns for eight years,...

    Keroche woes: Tabitha Karanja failed to file tax returns for eight years, KRA states

    Keroche CEO Tabitha Karanja inspects beer production at the Naivasha brewery on March 17, 2022. [Antony Gitonga, Standard]

    The Kenya Revenue Authority now accuses Keroche Breweries Chief Executive Officer Tabitha Karanja of failing to honour her tax obligation.

    KRA said Mrs Karanja has not filed her annual tax returns for the period years between 2008 and 2014. “The first respondent (Tabitha Karanja) has not filed her annual income tax returns for the tax period years 2008 to 2014,” stated Timothy Oloo, an officer working with KRA.

    The taxman made the revelation in a reply to a petition filed by Mr Daniel Mahiri through lawyer, Jinaro Kimutai, seeking to block the CEO from contesting for the Nakuru Senate seat over alleged tax evasion.

    Mrs Karanja is the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) flag bearer in the race. Mahiri was a senatorial seat aspirant, but lost to Mrs Karanja in the primaries. He has premised his suit on alleged tax evasion and economic crimes by Keroche Breweries.

    Mr Mahiri says the only times Keroche has agreed to settle the tax arrears is after prosecution.

    He says even after being granted a chance through the Alternative Dispute Resolution Mechanism, Keroche has always dishonoured agreements of negotiations, begging the question of whether there is goodwill on her part to pay taxes.

    Mr Mahiri says there is an ongoing Criminal Case Number 1436 of 2019 before the Anti-Corruption Court, where the CEO has been charged with various offences on taxes amounting to Sh14,451,836,375.

    He says Keroche is not only a suspect, but a fully admitted tax evader with no pending appeal.

    Mahiri in the suit filed in May, named Mrs Karanja, KRA, United Democratic Alliance (UDA) and the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) as respondents in the case.

    Oloo further states that Mrs Karanja filed her income tax return for the years 2015, 2016 and 2017 and a late penalty of Sh2,000 was charged for each year, which remains unpaid.

    The taxman claims the company CEO has an outstanding income tax of Sh1,405,223 for the tax period years 2015 to 2021 which remains unpaid to date.

    “The first respondent does not hold a current tax compliance certificate. The first respondent has not met her tax obligations as required under the law,” read the reply.

    It is, however, not clear from the reply whether KRA supports the case by Mahiri or not, due to contradicting paragraphs.

    In one of the paragraphs, Oloo on behalf of KRA, states it opposes the suit by Mahiri in totality.

    “I have read and understood, and Counsel on record has explained to me the contents of the Notice of Motion Application filed under a Certificate of Urgency both dated 12th May 2022, together with the petition and the supporting affidavit sworn by Daniel Mahiri Gichaga sworn on the same date and documents attached thereto, and in response wish to oppose the same in totality and state on behalf of the 5th Respondent (KRA),” read paragraph three of the reply.

    Oloo in subsequent paragraphs, however, says KRA supports in totality all the prayers in the petition by Mahiri.

    “That the 5th Respondent supports in totality all the prayers in the Petition dated 12th May 2022,” read paragraph 4 of the reply.

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