Well,that didn’t take long.Looks like the cash shortage in the treasury necessitates that the man who runs things look for cash wherever he can find it. It’s a pity he can’t ask for refunds of the tens of millions he spent on his campaign. But his desperation in search of cash begs the question again. Roosevelt Skerrit,where is the people’s $1.2 Billion dollars? Alas now that the treasury is apparently empty the people who shamelessly allowed Skerrit to get away by voting his corrupt Government back into power even if he could not account for it may want to know. What will he tell them?
Some Dominican business people who owe the treasury millions of dollars including Roosevelt Skerrit defenders, enablers and supporters obviously believed that the taxman would never visit them.
According to unconfirmed reports, one such business establishment was able to get an injunction forbidding the Inland Revenue Department to audit their books in order to determine their tax liability and the country has been deprived of that tax revenue for approximately 20 years. If that is the case will that privileged and protected business establishment finally pay up? This is something to watch.At least the people should know what the current status on this long running issue is.
For some time now there have been stories and certain indicators that would suggest that the country id dead broke! The CBI revenue pipeline is choked for whatever reason or combination of reasons. All the pre- election smoke is disappearing, the mirror is still a bit foggy, but the reality is slowly trickling in. Dominica is broke! The sham is over.
There are not many options for the man who runs things now,and this is not the first time that when the country is broke he comes down on Dominica’s taxpayers.
In 2013 it was revealed that the private sector was owing the government of Dominica over $100-million dollars in unpaid taxes. At some point it was revealed to be $156M . In a pre-budget consultation that Roosevelt Skerrit, the man who runs things held in 2013, he stated the figure at EC$106-million.
At that time as Finance Minister, he said he was willing to develop payment plans including concessions on interest and penalties for offending businesses which might approach them in this regard, if they are serious about settling their debts. It is fair to now ask what happened with that? Did the tax debtors just ignore their liabilities and nothing happened? Did they honor them but continued to accumulate new tax debts?
The Private Sector did show some concern and promised the citizenry that all efforts must be made to pay taxes owed to the Government. The people should ask questions if they still can.
So it’s Deja Vu, will the tax debtors comply this time and pay up the over $257M the Government claims is owed? According to the man who runs things the total debt is $257, 921, 653.74 of which $77, 184, 711.85 is owed as corporate tax, $66,279,142.09 is personal income tax, $15,147,663.59 paye tax $73,956,294.99 value added tax (VAT) was in Inland Revenue Department derelict in their duties too? Why?
These are desperate times, and it’s time to pay up, the country needs every dime and the dictator will collect this time he says! And so he advises the nation “I will be left with no choice but to go to the Parliament and to pass the appropriate legislation, to give the state far-reaching powers to collect that which you owe to the state,” Skerrit said, adding “I am saying to you, that legislation would be draconian in nature”. The party is over, it’s crunch time! Fasten your seatbelts. Dominica is not a ward of China, it is an Independent, sovereign nation which must generate its own revenue to run itself. Now you know! Prepare for what’s to come with the continued depletion of the main and treasured CBI revenue source!