Keroche appeals tax tribunal decision of paying Sh 9B tax

Joseph and Tabitha Karanja in court at a past date. Photo/Suek

Keroche Breweries Limited has appealed the decision by the Tax Appeals Tribunal that it pays Sh 9 billion tax.

The brewery wants an order to be issued staying the enforcement of the judgement of the Tribunal delivered on 9th March 2020 pending hearing and determination of the case.

They also want KRA notice to Equity Bank dated 11th March 2020 and any other agency notice issued on Keroche’s bankers and debtors be lifted and KRA stopped from taking any steps to collect any money pursuant to the said agency notices issued to the Keroche’s debtors.

Under a certificate of urgency, Keroche argues that its bankers are legally obligated to remit the sums set out in the agency notices unless there is a court order stopping such remission.

“The sums claimed as taxes are significant and are disputed. If KRA is allowed to recover these sums , the company’s operations will grind to a halt and it will cease existing,” Says Keroche.

It is the company’s claims that the Tribunal judgement is wrong and legally untenable and it has good grounds to appeal.

The Naivasha based brewer argues that the Tribunal did not read the entire decision as it only read the conclusion and the judgement has not been available to the company despite asking for it.

Keroche is apprehensive that Kenya Revenue Authority will issue other notices on its other bankers and may take additional enforcement action which will greatly jeopardize the company’s appeal and render it an academic exercise.

The company has numerous contractual obligations with third parties and these obligations will not be met if KRA is allowed to enforcement the judgement of the Tribunal.

“This will expose the Keroche Breweries to suits for damages for breach of contracts,” Keroche adds.

According yo the papers almost 300 people will lose third livelihood should the taxman proceed to enforce the judgement of the Tribunal.

Keroche bosses, Tabitha and Joseph Karanja are facing tax evasion charges among others.