Bill to Abolish Voting Tax in North Borneo Announced | Daily Express Online


(Monday August 27, 1962)

End of taxation at 74

JESSELTON, Sunday. – The local government secretary announced today that he will present a bill at the next Legislative Council meeting to abolish the voting tax in North Borneo.

The voting tax in North Borneo has a long and interesting history.

It was first established in 1888 when district officers were authorized to grant certificates of tenure to any indigenous individual for the village community which were to guarantee the title of the holders as long as they continued to pay the land tax. capitation regularly and correctly to cultivate or remain in business. farms.

Proclamation

This Proclamation was replaced in 1902 by a “Proclamation aimed at the progressive abolition of poll tax and the establishment of a system of land tenure by the natives”. This law formed the basis of the current system of land tenure on indigenous title. However, since Land Proclamation No. 7 of 1913, no title or occupation of land has depended on the payment of a voting tax.

The ballot tax proclamation contained a provision exempting from payment all natives paying an annual tax in excess of $ 3 per year in the form of rent, boat licenses or certain other taxes. With the constant increase in the standard of living of the natives of North Borneo and the increase in the amount of land held by them under title, the income of the poll tax has continued to decline and they are only rising. at some $ 63,000. Of this amount, moreover, three quarters do not go to the central government, but to local authorities.

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Recommendation

In 1961, the Native Needs Committee recommended the abolition of capitation and its views were supported by the Native Chiefs’ Conference and the Revenue Committee. Two major difficulties arise with regard to the abolition of this tax. First, it constitutes an important element of revenue over a period by subsidizing these local authorities from central government funds. Second, poll tax has been collected in the past by chiefs who received a commission for its collection. The government proposes to replace this form of remuneration with a corresponding increase in the bonuses granted to heads of establishments.

The abolition of the Poll Tax will not adversely affect existing Indigenous rights or privileges.

It is proposed by the government that if this bill is adopted, the poll tax be abolished with effect from January 1, 1963.


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