PHD tax evasion: Magaya realises USD28 million from sales

Prophetic Healing Deliverance Ministries (PHD) cashed in USD28 706 040.60 from selling church regalia, anointing oil, holy water and running their guest houses at Yadah Hotel, the court heard.

The popular ministry led by self -styled prophet Walter Magaya was dragged to court for evading taxes even after cashing tens of millions over a four year period extending from 2013 to 2017.

PHD representative, Nelson Marimo appeared before Harare Magistrate Learnmore Mapiye facing charges of failing to submit income returns, failing to withhold employees tax, failing to keep proper records and neglecting to declare exports.

The matter was remanded to February 28 for trial.

The State led by prosecutor Peter Kachirika, alleged that PhD raises revenue from selling church regalia, annointing oil and holy water and also operating guest house at Yadah hotel.

It is further alleged that sometime in October 2018, ZIMRA conducted tax investigations and recovered financial statements from PHD extending from 2013 to 2017.

Financial statements were also recovered from the Commercial Bank of Zimbabwe which were submitted by accused’s  loan application, the court heard.

The statements showed that PHD had realised sales amounting to US$28 706 040 during the period 2013 to 2017, and during that period accused did not submit income tax returns to ZIMRA.

It is further alleged that during the same period PHD paid remuneration amounting to US $950 522.99 to pROPHET Magaya’s wife prophetess Tendai Magaya through bank transfers into her personal Stanbic bank account.

PHD also transferred remuneration of USD 2 403 658.24 to Walter Magaya’s Stanbic bank account on both occasions PHD evaded tax by not paying the pay as you earn tax  (PAYE).

The ministry is alleged to have not been in possession of records of all goods and services that it sells and the purchases thereafter which is a violation of Value Added Tax Act.

The court heard that the for the VAT returns during the said period, PHD failed to declare the exports it made and had submitted  VAT returns with false entries again with violation of the law.