The DGI [Inland Revenue Service] signed a partnership with Eneo [Energy of Cameroon] to collect the property tax. You should therefore not be surprised to see your electricity bill increasing from this month onwards”. This is the message going around on social networks these past days to alert consumers on the fact that, from now on, it will the private concessionaire in the electricity sector in Cameroon Eneo, who will be in charge of collecting the property tax on behalf of the tax administration by including it in the bills of the consumers.
The alert continues: Attention! Attention! Attention! Tenants! Be careful. For those who do not have any contract with Eneo, make sure that in sharing the electricity fee you are not charged for the property tax because it must be borne by the landlord”.
This alert is however fake. Eneo was never meant to collect the property tax on behalf of the public tax administration.
An inspector working for the Inland Revenue Service who requested to remain anonymous due to confidentiality reasons, explains that, the Management of this administrative service only used in April 2016, the client list of Eneo, and only that, to identify taxpayers (1.1 million individuals) because, the subscriptions are quite often made in the name of the building owner. “On this basis, we have established pre-filled declarations which might not have reflected the exact amount because the basis of the property tax calculation at the rate of 0.1% is the value of the land + the value of the buildings at the date of payment of said tax. Therefore, nobody but the owner can provide accurate information on this value”, specified the civil servant.