Whistle-blowers turning in tax dodgers can now claim a reward of 10 percent of the recovered taxes or duties under regulations gazetted on Friday by Finance and Economic Development Minister Professor Mthuli Ncube.
The Revenue Authority (Reward for Information) (General) Regulations, 2020, published in the Statutory Instrument 150 of 2020, covers underpayment or non-payment of income and company taxes, capital gains taxes, VAT and customs and excise duties.
Various people cannot claim reward including Zimra staff and their near relatives and the Revenue Board, or those who would have obtained the information as part of their official duties when working for Zimra or sitting on the board, and getting the information from someone who cannot claim the reward and is passing it on to someone who can.
Anyone who was involved in the under-reporting or non-payment of tax cannot be paid a reward, either, effectively barring accomplices.
The reward can only be given for information that directly leads to the recovery of revenue and is set at 10 percent of the actual amount recovered.
Zimra will do its best to keep the identity of the whistleblower secret.
But those providing false information will be in serious trouble, being guilty of an offence that leads to a maximum of a level 7 fine, $9 600 in the latest list, or two years in jail or both.
According to the regulations, any claim for reward must be accompanied by an original signed declaration under penalty of perjury confirming the authenticity of the application including any accompanying statements or documents.