URA launches online tax payment system

URA Commissioner General Doris Akol, Johnson Agoreyo, Managing Direstor UBA and Victor Ndlovu, VISA’s Managing Director
Doris Akol the URA Commissioner General displays the point of sale machine as Johnson Agoreyo, the Managing Director of UBA and Victor Ndlovu, VISA’s Managing Director look on. Courtesy Photo.

Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) has launched an online tax payment method powered by Visa Cards and MasterCard.

While unveiling the Point of Sale – POS (card swiping) method, URA Commissioner General Doris Akol said it is part of the e-TAX system which was developed to enable tax payers easily fulfill their obligations.

She said that the Card swiping method becomes the ninth payment mode put in place by the tax body to enable tax payers pay for taxes and other government services in a faster and more convenient way.

Some of the already existing revenue payment modes in URA are by Cash, Cheque, Swift, Demand Note, Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT), Payway, Mobile Money and Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS) transfer.

Akol revealed that these payment modes realised a revenue collection of 7.8 trillion Shillings between July 2016 and February 2017. According to URA figures, 2.5 trillion shillings was collected through the cash payment mode, 1.6 trillion by Cheque, 6.4 billion by Swift, and 3.1 trillion by EFT among others.

Akol noted that the new card swiping method was developed in partnership with the United Bank for Africa (UBA) and VISA. She noted that the key features of the new online payment are the ability to register a payment on URA’s portal and complete the payment on the bank’s portal.

Akol said that any VISA or MasterCard irrespective of the bank that issued the card can be used for payment. Some of the real-time access government services that can be paid for through the method are Court bail, Visa fees at the airport, passports and traffic fines among others.

On why URA chose UBA for the new type of payment, Akol said that UBA was the first bank that came up to pioneer the product but that other banks have since expressed interest through applications to adopt the method and are yet to be approved.

Johnson Agoreyo, the Managing Director of UBA said that the bank will provide customized point of sale terminals that are to be used for the transactions. He also noted that the payments are to be made at a domestic charge of two percent and a three percent international charge.

Victor Ndlovu, VISA’s Managing Director defended the security of the new payment system saying it is transparent and fraud proof. He explained that the integrity of the data processed in their network is secured and that it goes through stringent testing before authentication.