Sri Lanka govt deceiving people on taxes: TI

Jan 01, 2010 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s government should ensure greater
public awareness of taxes it imposes on the people and not deceive
them through lack of transparency, the local arm of an international
watchdog has said. Provisions which create the deception that a government can raise
money to spend without taxing the people should be removed.

Transparency International said there should also be an urgent
requirement to publish changes in import taxes in the newspapers.

Thereafter, the current practice of raising import duties by gazette
overnight, particularly on food items, without any debate in
parliament must be removed.

The TI report called for a public information act – laws making it
compulsory for government to reveal information to the people.

This would go a long way in reducing the existing inefficiencies in
the market and help individuals, households and businesses make
informed decisions in a transparent environment. Transparency International Sri Lanka, the local arm of the global
civil society organization fighting against corruption, said the
practice of ‘tax by midnight gazette’ should be stopped forthwith.

This was a process where taxes on vari