Somaliland: Government Establishes Tax Litigation Commission, Under Ministry of Finance

Finance minister Dr Saad Ali Shire at the launch of Somaliland Tax Litigation and Appeal Committee
Flanked by his deputy Muse Salaf, Attorney General Hasan Ahmed Aden and Deputy Police commissioner Abdi Hasan Mire, Somaliland finance minister Dr Saad Ali Shire (2nd L) launches the Tax Litigation Commission at ambassador Hotel Hargeisa

Somalilandsun: Taxpayers in Somaliland have been availed a legal avenue to resolve differences with local tax authorities.

This follows the establishment of a Tax Litigation Commission by the ministry of finance that was officially inaugurated by Finance minister Dr Saad Ali Shire at a ceremony held at the Ambassador Hotel Hargeisa.

Apart from the minister others in attendance were his deputy Muse Salaf, Attorney General Hasan Ahmed Aden and Deputy Police commissioner Abdi Hasan Mire among other officials

Addressing the function Dr Saad Ali Shire said that a tax audit sometimes brings difference of opinion between a taxpayer and the tax authorities, adding that the main cause of such differences is a misalignment between the facts regarding the taxpayer’s transactions or assets and those assumed by the tax authorities.

Stressing that it is not unusual for arguments over when and how much the taxpayer is obliged to pay the finance minister said the objective of the Tax Litigation Commission is to avail dissatisfied Tax payers in Somaliland a legal channel for arbitration with local and central tax authorities.

The establishment of this commission is in line with ongoing realignment of the Somaliland Public Finance Management Policies.

For beneficiary taxpayers if you believe you have received an unfair assessment notice, you should first examine whether it is based on accurate facts. It is also necessary to verify there are no misinterpretations of tax laws.

If the examination finds the assessment notice to be in error, you can correct the erroneous assessment notice and receive a refund for overpaid taxes through tax appeal and tax litigation. Given your accountability to stakeholders such as shareholders, banks and business partners, you are required to deal with questionable assessment notices appropriately.

Pursuit of these procedures will then make the Tax Litigation Committee the last option