Analysis and Findings
4.The parties in due compliance with the directions of the Tribunal to the effect that the application was to be canvassed by way of written submissions duly filed their respective written submissions and which submissions have been duly considered by the Tribunal in arriving at the findings hereinafter.
5.The Tribunal is enjoined to determine the length and reason for the delay when considering an application for the extension of time to appeal out of time. The power to extend time is discretionary and unfettered but the same must be exercised judiciously and it is not a right to be granted to the Applicant.
6.In determining whether to extend time, the Tribunal is guided by the decision in the case of Leo Sila Mutiso -vs- Rose Hellen Wangari Mwangi - Civil Application No. Nai. 255 of 1997 (unreported), where the Court expressed itself as thus:-
7.The Tribunal is further guided by the principles set out in John Kuria v Kelen Wahito, Nairobi Civil Application Nai 19 of 1983 April 10,  where the court used the following criteria to consider the application.a.Whether there is a reasonable cause for the delay?b.Whether the appeal is merited?c.Whether there will be prejudice suffered by the Respondent if the extension is granted?d.Whether the application for extension has been brought without undue delay?
a.whether There Is A Reasonable Cause For The Delay?
8.In considering what constitutes a reasonable cause for the delay, the court in Paul Wanjohi Mathenge v Duncan Gichane Mathenge  eKLR, held that:-
9.The Appellant in the affidavit in support of the application indicated that she did not receive the objection decision and other correspondences from the Appellant for the reason that being unfamiliar with accounts and issues she engaged an accountant who changed her e-mail credentials and subsequently left employment without handing over.
10.The Respondent contended that the Appellant lodged her notice of objection on the 1st June, 2023 and that the objection was on the 6th June, 2022 invalidated by the Appellant with the consequence of having the raised assessments confirmed.
11.The Tribunal has perused the Affidavits of both parties and the documentary evidence and has found that the Respondent does not appear to contest any changes in the Appellant’s e-mail credentials on itax and has not indicated the manner in which the notice invalidating the objection was served upon the Appellant.
12.It is therefore the Tribunal’s finding that the reason tendered by the Applicant has been satisfactorily established to be a reasonable and plausible cause for the delay in commencing an appeal process before the Tribunal as against the Respondent’s decision of invalidating the Appellant’s notice of objection.
b.Whether The Appeal Is Merited?
13.The Tribunal examined whether the actions complained of by the Appellant were merited and whether there is an arguable appeal before the Tribunal or the appeal is frivolous to the extent that it would only result in a waste of the Tribunal’s time.
14.An appeal being merited does not mean that it should necessarily succeed rather it is arguable. The Tribunal was guided by the findings of the court in George Boniface Mbugua v Mohammed Jawayd Iqbal (Personal representative of the Estate of the late Ghulam Rasool Jammohamed)  eKLR where it was held that:-
15.The Tribunal notes that the Appellant has through its Memorandum of Appeal filed simultaneously with the application raised some grounds of appeal and to that extent the Appellant has demonstrated presence of some trial issues.
16.It is the Tribunal’s finding that these are issues only capable of being interrogated in a trial. As such, there is an arguable Appeal and the same has triable issues that can only be gleaned in an evidentiary hearing before it.
c.Whether There Will Be Prejudice Suffered By The Respondent If The Extension Is Granted?
17.The Respondent did not demonstrate how it would suffer prejudice if the prayer for expansion of time was granted. The Respondent only pointed out the fact that allowing the Appeal after such an inordinate period will be prejudicial to it and since the Respondent’s mandate of collection of revenue is key to the economic development of the Country, the public and all the arms of the Government specifically the Tribunal are called upon to assist the Respondent in carrying out its mandate so long as the same is within the law.
18.The Tribunal however observes that the Appellant’s recourse to justice lies in an appeal to the Tribunal. Thus, the Appellant would suffer prejudice if it is not granted leave to file its appeal considering that the amount of money claimed is of significant value.
19.It is the view of the Tribunal that the Respondent would otherwise still collect the taxes together with penalties and interest should the Applicant be found to be at fault.
20.The Tribunal, therefore, finds that the Respondent will not suffer prejudice if the extension is granted.
d.Whether The Application For An Extension Has Been Brought Without Undue Delay?
21.The Tribunal noted from the submissions and documents presented that the Appellant’s bank was issued with an agency notice that prompted the filing of the Appeal and the current application.
22.The Appellant contended that it did not become aware of the notice of invalidation of the Objection until she visited the Respondent’s offices.
23.The Tribunal, consequently finds the Appellant has satisfactorily proven to it that she filed the application at the earliest convenient time after she found out about the notice of invalidation of the objection and the same has been brought without undue delay.
24.The Tribunal in the circumstances finds the application is meritorious and accordingly finds in favour of the Appellant.