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M50 Million Rent Relief for SMMEs revealed, but not all businesses will be eligible

M50 Million Rent Relief for SMMEs revealed, but not all businesses will be eligible

The much anticipated Rent Relief which was announced by the Prime Minister as one of the measures intended to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 induced during the national lockdown, has finally been implemented and the Lesotho Revenue Authority (LRA) has been tasked with the responsibility to administer it on behalf of the government.

Speaking during a breakfast meeting held in Maseru on Wednesday, LRA Acting Commissioner General, Mrs. Mathabo Mokoko indicated that M50 million rent relief is meant to assist businesses that are struggling as a result of COVID-19 pandemic, noting that not all businesses will be eligible for the relief.

According to Mokoko, this rent support will only cover a period of one month (April) for commercial property tenants with lease agreements between themselves and commercial building owners whose businesses were not operational during the national lockdown.

Speaking at the same event, LRA Head Compliance Risk Management and Intelligence, Mr. Bahlakoana Shelile highlighted that businesses that qualify for this relief are Small Medium and Micro Enterprises that are tax compliant, those that are up to date with their rental payments, those that have a sub-lease agreement with property owner not less than three months old.

He stated that since COVID-19 still poses a serious threat, tenants and property owners are urged to avoid physical contact at all cost, but rather contact LRA through its website, email or call centre during normal working hours from Monday to Friday.

Mr. Shelile further indicated that to get this relief, a tenant must fill Payment Requisistion Form obtainable at the Authority’s website or at the Service Centre, adding that he or she will receive receipt acknowledgement through an email or SMS within two working days, and payment will be made within seven working days if all requirements of the claim are met.
Source: LENA

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