Museveni Blocks Auctioning Of Pioneer Easy Buses


information pills geneva; font-size: small;”>“Why tax them in the first place? There is a problem with the government tax policy. If government wants to decongest the city, buy isn’t it in public interest that people import buses tax free, ” he said.

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The President was addressing stakeholders in the transport sector in the city including KCCA led by the Minister for Security Muruli Mukasa and KCCA executive director Jennifer Musisi.

The meeting was also attended by Directors of the Pioneer Easy Bus Company including John Masanda, Albert Muganga, Esther Tayebwa and Oliver Wolff a German Transport consultant.

About 99 Pioneer Easy Buses were impounded by the government revenue body in February following the company’s failure to clear its cumulative debt that had amounted to sh8 billion ever since its commencement of work last year.

The company started its operations along Kampala roads in March 2012 having taken advantage of a strike by taxi operators in protest of the 120,000 monthly collections by the KCCA.

The President wants the auctioning halted and the company allowed to pay the tax arrears in affordable installments and also proposed a possibility of cancelling the debt as long as the company complies with the bus specifications for the city.

He said the Ministry of Transport will handle the issue of jurisdiction of the buses into other local governments in the neighbouring districts outside KCCA.

“Don’t auction the buses, give them time to pay the taxes. If we can convince the EA countries on the tax exemption,” he said.

The tax law on buses and trucks is governed by EAC law regimes and Uganda will need to seek exemption of taxes on buses from Arusha especially if none of the neighbouring countries can supply the specifications of buses needed in Uganda.

The President said the buses are trying to solve the issue of congestion in the city by providing vehicles with wider bodies without many engines.

“We should not look at this as a tax measure rather as helping us solve a problem,” he said.

The President was however against guaranteeing a loan for Pioneer Bus Company saying this is a problem, because if the company fails to pay, it becomes a public debt.

“What we would do is to create a fund from which you can borrow and pay back. But there is something wrong with guaranteeing a loan. Do it on your own so that you are efficient. If you are inefficient you go bankrupt,” he said.

The President said he will support a proposal by KCCA to give Pioneer Buses exclusivity on particular routes to enable it maintain low fares for travelers and directed the Ministry of transport and that of Finance and economic planning to immediately issue a license to RVR railways to transport passengers and ease the transport problem in the city.

Pioneer Bus company accumulated a debt of Shs 8.5billion in tax arrears as a result of importation of 100 buses as exercise duty, import duty interest etc. The company directors say they accumulated debts of up to Shs 14billion in loses because they were forced to operate before some concessions with KCCA were put in place.

The company helped break a strike of taxi drivers who had held government and travelers at ransom over a row with KCCA by providing transportation together with RVR wagons popularly known as Kayoola.


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