More than 7 million Rwandans do their banking through their cellphones, but many of the agents who facilitate the banking transactions never declared their income to the country’s tax authority. Now the tax authority has started taking a 15-percent withholding tax from these agents’ incomes with the cellphone provider, plunging some of these agents into financial turmoil.
Rwandan children of all ages are left alone each day near the border crossing with Democratic Republic of Congo as their mothers peddle food and other goods there. The women say they have no other way to earn money, even though their work forces their children to fend for themselves during the day.
This article refers to a March 26th speech by Paul Kagame. The speech has been intentionally paraphrased, rather than quoted, to comply with Rwandan law that forbids the president's words to be used out of context.
A 1,150 percent tax increase on used clothing and shoes (known as “caguwa”), along with a total ban on the widespread trade that will take effect in 2019, are intended to promote local manufacturing and self-reliance. Those involved in secondhand sales say these actions will ruin their livelihoods, though the government promises solutions.
Rwanda has earned honors and become a cleaner country as a result of its work in environmental conservation, such as its ban on plastic bags since 2004. But many of its residents say they still need the bags, and some women have stepped into the breach to smuggle the bags in from the neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo. Their financial reward is offset by the risk of arrest, confiscation and beatings.
Rwanda’s Parliament recognized cremation as a legally regulated form of interment in November 2012 at the request of Hindu residents. But no Rwandans have cremated their dead at the nation’s lone crematorium.