Officials from Uganda Revenue Authority and civil society organization, SEATINI have said through university tax debates, they can nurture a tax compliant society in the country.
Speaking during the final of the fourth edition of the Interuniversity tax debate at Golf Course Hotel in Kampala, David Rusoke, the team leader for tax literacy at URA said that through such debates and competitions, they aim at creating awareness about taxes and in turn ensure compliance.
“We want to have a tax paying society but that doesn’t come when people are not aware of their obligations. Through these tax debates, we decided to start from the young population since they are majority,”Rusoke said.
He explained that by targeting the youths at university, they can be ambassadors to their fellow peers in a bid to create awareness and tax compliance
“They are the people to help us in communities to help tell people what it means to be tax compliant.”
According to SEATINI’s Grace Namugambe, such debates ensure students right from schools get interested in tax issues.
“This is one way to ensure the youths pick interest in tax discussions. We notice that it is through such engagements that we can see more youths get engaged and air out their opinions on the tax policies in the country,”Namugambe said.
Ryan Muhumuza from the Debate Society of Uganda could not agree more with Namugambe’s comments.
“Such debates offer mentorship to young people on issues to do with tax. Economics is something young people don’t want to engage in while discussing national issues but through such debates, they can be interested,”Muhumuza said.
“Like here, we brainstorm on the challenges that people face. If it is an unjust tax, how to address such matters on who to address it is discussed. If there is poor revenue collection in which ways can youth contribute to ensure this is corrected? This discussion can help come up with solutions to these problems.”
This year’s interuniversity tax debate saw 17 universities participate and Makerere emerged the winners who will represent the country in the East African interuniversity tax debate.
Mbarara, Gulu and Kyambogo university were the first, second and third runners up respectively.