Radio program inspires local community to begin to pay taxes

EAI's radio programming transforms local resistance into cooperation for civic governance.

A Project of
Voices for Peace (V4P)

Resistance to the decentralization process

“Since 2012, we have not had a single representative from the state come to the village.”

Following Mali’s civil war, the return of the national government’s presence in the north has been hampered by the local communities distrust of the government. This challenge to the country’s decentralization process is most apparent in the refusal of the local community to pay taxes to a government they claim does not represent them.

“A group of people warned us that anything we paid in the absence of the state would be used for personal gains, and would constitute haram.”

Changing minds through accurate information

EAI has made supporting the decentralization process as part of our Voices for Peace(V4P) program in Mali a priority, specifically through our radio programming with a strategic focus on both the accountability of government on the supply side and the responsibility of citizens on the demand side.

“We started receiving new messages through radio Goudra of Ouatagouna. At the same time, our chiefs and village leaders have been helping us understand why we should pay taxes.” – Souleymane Ag Adera

Following a January broadcast of a V4P radio program focused on taxation as a key success factor for the decentralization process, the village Chief of Karou in the Gao region organized the entire village to pay the current and back taxes that were due on Civics Day.

“The day where the Mayor, Voices for Peace and Goura Radio came to the village in response to an invitation of the village chief and his advisors, we understood what the Tax on Regional and Local Development (TRLD) really was.” – Ali  Touré

Following the ceremony, which was covered by V4P’s radio program, neighboring village Chiefs followed suit, and there is now an active competition among a number of villages in Ouattagona to position themselves as the most participatory village in paying their taxes and contributing to the country’s decentralization process. 

“We are doing our duty for the development of our community. In return, we expect more transparency and accountability in the management of resources from our communal chiefs.”

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