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17.01.2005 Business & Finance

Customs in B/A collects 20 billion cedis

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Sunyani Jan 17, GNA - The Customs, Excise and Preventive Service (CEPS) in Brong Ahafo collected a total of revenue of 20.3 billion cedis last year.

Mr. Richard Kumah Lanyon, Assistant Commissioner in-charge of the region who Announced ths at an end-of-year party for staff of the Service in Sunyani said the amount was against the set target of 22.7 billion cedis.

He added that the revenue collected at the region's nine collection stations represented 90 percent of the set target and cited the political crisis in Cote d'Ivoire as a contributory factor to the short fall.

The Assistant Commissioner explained that the fear of traders, "especially around our part of the border with that country", for the loss of their lives and the insecurity of their merchandise caused a fall in the volume of trade.

"Petty smuggling and inherent weakness in the tax collection mechanism, leading to revenue leakages such as false invoices, mis-description and mis-classification also affected revenue collection in the region", Mr. Lanyon added.

He said Sunyani station collected the highest amount of 1,754,434,839 cedis, exceeding the set target of 702 million cedis, followed by Oseikojokrom with 3,851,434,214 cedis to exceed it's the target of 2,652,000 cedis, whilst Nkrankwanta had the lowest revenue of 6,036,631 cedis as against a target of 227 million cedis.

Mr. Lanyon said efforts were being made to strengthen the Service's structures and adopt new strategies to improve revenue collection and to be able to exceed targets.

The Assistant Commissioner called on the staff to give of their best in performance of their duties and to eschew malpractices that could tarnish the image of the Service.

He thanked other security services and the media for their co-operation and support in revenue collection.

In a New Year message read for him, Brigadier-General Richardson E. Baiden, Commissioner of CEPS, urged the staff to develop strategic policies and programmes to meet the needs and expectations of clients. "We need to redouble our efforts by emphasizing on the virtues of discipline and commitment to duty and by exhibiting exceptional work standard to actualize our mission", he said.

Brig-Gen. Baiden stressed that the future of the Service depended on the ability of staff to accept changes in the organizational set up, management practices and policies to meet future challenges. Three staff members were presented with awards for assisting in combating smuggling and revenue collection.

Madam Comfort Otu was adjudged the best worker at the junior level and Mr. Lawrence Osei Alanga, best worker at the senior level, whilst Mr. Emmanuel Doe, regional accountant, received an award for being the best worker at the Sunyani office. Jan. 17 05

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