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22.10.2004 Regional News

Payment of tax should be condition for registration of pupils - Judge

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Accra, Oct. 22, GNA - A High Court Judge on Friday suggested the introduction of a tax clearance certificate as a condition precedent to the registration of pupils into first and second cycle schools. Ms Margaret Insaidoo said with that condition, citizens would be obliged to pay their taxes at all costs because every household has a school going child.

This would also help reduce the population of tax defaulters in the country.

"The tax administration can determine some minimum tax to be paid on account before the issuance of tax clearance certificate as done in Nigeria," she said at the opening of the 10th anniversary celebration of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Ladies Club in Accra.

Ms Insaidoo said taxation, similar to tithes paid by Christians, belonged to the Government and it was obligatory for every citizen to pay in order to fund Government business and development projects. She told the gathering, including representatives of the various IRS Ladies Clubs from all over the country and representatives of other sister-associations, that because of the spin-off effects on tithes, Christians were enticed to pay their taxes. The IRS Ladies must also fashion ways to motivate people to freely pay their taxes.

Ms Insaidoo commended the Club and the IRS in particular for exceeding targets set by the Government over the past three years. She announced that the IRS, for instance, exceeded last year's target of 3.732 trillion cedis by collecting 4.091 trillion cedis.

Mrs Hannah Quarm, President of the Club, said as part of the celebration, members would hold an annual general meeting to deliberate on the anniversary theme: "Expanding the Tax Base, A Challenge to IRS Ladies".

Other programmes are donation to orphanages, dinner and awards night to reward those, who have supported the Club, and a thanksgiving service to climax it.

Mrs Janet Opoku-Agyeampong, Commissioner of IRS, who chaired the function, appealed to all the ladies to strive to higher positions by working hard and upgrading their knowledge.

She also urged them to be committed to their job and help Ghana raise enough revenue.

In fraternal messages by sister-ladies clubs, IRS ladies were urged to increase their education on the need for the public to pay their taxes and also to be fair, firm and transparent in their operations.

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