With a Positive Attitude, URA Shall Prosper [opinion]

I wish to thank the minister for Finance, Planning and Economic Development, the outgoing commissioner general, the URA board, the staff and the nation for placing their faith and trust in me.

The fact that you have found me worthy and befitting of this position is no small thing and I shall endeavour to uphold and live beyond the expected. I am surrounded by people that have inspired, sharpened and moulded me into the great woman leader that you see. Thank you so much for the footprints you have left in my career life.

To Allen Kagina, your indelible mark on URA is celebrated at both international and national levels. I would like to assure you that as we reinforce the programmes and initiatives we have started, we shall strengthen the foundation that you have laid for URA into a firm structure that shall indeed carry this nation out of dependency.

We will also by and by, building on the culture of innovation, introduce the systems and processes that will propel URA to greatness. Thank you for taking off time to coach and mentor me and, indeed, the entire URA senior management team and staff.

To fellow senior management staff, you challenged me and together we have sharpened our thirst for excellence. We share a warm spirit of camaraderie and we are a g team. I am confident that, together, we shall move this Authority upward and forward.

To my fellow staff of URA, we have been handed the mantle to provide for Uganda. URA is blessed and gifted with exceptionally talented people. However, John Maxwell has been quoted to have said that talent in not enough. It is said that “For success, attitude is equally as important as ability”. As URA, we have the ability and we can only build on our can-do attitude and record of possibility-thinking to ensure that we live to fulfill our mandate to the nation.

I shall continue to equip, fight for, and stand with you and together we shall make our mark as the unrelenting force upon whom the country depends. Many have said the targets ahead of us are stiff but, the family and force that we are, have seen us rise and jump the high hurdles that have crossed our paths.

To our taxpayers, the revenue mobilisation effort is actually done by you and URA is only a facilitator. When you prosper, URA prospers. So, we commit to employing our best effort to give the information, support and service solutions that will build your business capacity but also your capacity to contribute your fair share to the revenue basket.

I thank the board of directors for committing to support us as we carry out this assignment and assured of your support, we will direct our efforts at, among others, the following aspects:

Enhancing staff capacity: We will continue building staff capacity to match up with the ever-changing environment, harness knowledge and institutional learning. We will equip staff to be able to develop home-grown solutions without necessarily engaging consultants.

Strategic partnerships: We shall continue to augment avenues for continued engagement, feedback-gathering and, where necessary, develop additional networks and partnerships.

Tax-education: The country depends on each of us we, therefore, shall ensure that tax education is intensified so taxpayers are made aware of their obligations and entitlements. URA is a client-centric organisation. We will ensure that all our clients, in their different segments, are provided with solutions that are appropriate to their segments. For example, the large taxpayers will have their client service platforms, while the small and micro, and indeed all those segments that are still unserved, will also have theirs.

We shall make tax-education concise and appropriate to each of our clients segments so that together we avail a g base of good education, good roads, good medical facilities and better infrastructure for the generations to come.

Revenue mobilisation: We shall mobilise revenue through increased compliance channels that provide for a link between taxpayer education, mobilisation, facilitation, enforcement, and prosecution depending on the respective behavioural traits of the taxpayers.

We shall integrate processes and systems to grow what is already in place and increase efficiency focusing on the clients’ needs. Fellow countrymen, together, let us resolutely take on the duties ahead and the future that we dream of shall, indeed, become a reality.

The author is the commissioner general of Uganda Revenue Authority. This was a speech she delivered as she took office last month.

Source : The Observer

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