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11 Jun 2003 12:23
President Joseph Kabila of Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has become the first president of the vast country, formerly known as Zaire, to pay his annual income tax, an official said.
Kabila on Tuesday gave staff at the headquarters of the revenue services in Kinshasa a cheque for 29.4 million Congolese Francs (around $9 000 dollars).
He is “the first Congolese head of state to pay tax,” a civil servant at the revenue headquarters added.
Kabila was welcomed at the tax office by staff wearing traditional printed dress inscribed with the words “biso banso tofuta mpako” and “tulipe sisi wote kodi”, meaning “We must all pay tax” in the Lingala and Swahili languages.
The streets around the tax office were festooned with banners praising Kabila’s “decision to preach public spiritedness by paying your taxes”.
Kabila broke off his work with the committee following up a peace pact signed in December to end DRC’s four-and-a-half-year war to pay his taxes.
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