By Sandra Birungi
Parliament has concluded that Stephen Kiprotich’s money will to be taxed after all. Kiprotich was the only athlete who got a medal at this years’s Olympic games which were held in London.
The speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga called MPs from recess so as to discuss the impending issue on whether to tax or not to tax Kiprotich’s money which is well over sh200m which he got from various contributions from people and individual companies in Uganda.
The Finance Minister Maria Kiwanuka announed during the recess that government would bare the tax burden that could have been directed to Kiprotich’s several awards and donations bringing applause in the house. “I applaud Kiprotich for having the determination and the courage to run without waiting for sponsors. He also had a plan that eventually brought Gold to Uganda. That in the sector I work for is called value addition,” Kiwanuka told Parliament as Kiprotich listened from the VIP section of the chambers.
“This is why the ministry of Finance has decided to carry all the tax burden that will be levied on any of his gifts and offers,” the ministers stated.
Kiprotich’s gold medal at the Olympics is the second that Uganda has won since 42 years ago with Akii Bua. As a show of thanks, President Museveni gave him sh200m when he hosted him at State House Entebbe while corporate companies collected over sh360m.
As the whole country jubilated, Odonga Otto was worried that at rate of one gold medal in 40 years he might not see another come to the country. “Medals should not be seasonal like the lunar and solar eclipse. I am of the opinion that government should get land outside the busy centre and establish a national sports academy or university where all sports competed for in the Olympics are trained,” Otto advised.
“I am happy that the government is going to construct an academy and name it after me,” the ecstatic Kiprotich told reporters.