Misyl Energy Cleared Of Tax Evasion
AN INVESTIGATION by the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of the Ghana Police Service has absolved Bulk Oil Distribution Company (BDC), Misyl Energy Limited, of any wrongdoing in a reported case of tax evasion levelled against it.
The National Petroleum Authority (NPA) had suspended Misyl Energy Limited earlier this year after it detected under declaration by the oil company in products it sold to its clients as reported in its returns for the month of January 2018 leading to loss of tax revenue.
The offence, according to the report signed by DCOP Maame Yaa Tiwaa Addo-Danquah, Director General of CID, was committed at Tema and Detective Sergeant Martin D. Bawuah was in charge of the investigations.
But President of Misyl Energy Limited, Nick Danso Adjei, reportedly petitioned the Police Service on April 26, 2018, over the suspension of his outfit, to investigate the allegation.
DAILY GUIDE learnt that the petitioner sought investigations into the circumstances that led to the NPA suspending Misyl Energy Limited from operation with reason that the company had under declared products lifted or sold when it submitted its returns for the month of January 2018.
However, the Police report explained that “investigations have revealed that Misyl Energy is a BDC and as part of the responsibilities of all BDCs, they are duty bound to submit a monthly returns report on the volume of oil lifted (sold) to Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) at the end of each month to NPA to enable the state trace all taxes to be paid by the OMCs.”
“This report is submitted after the BDCs have reconciled the volume of products lifted for the month with their depots, OMCs and Customs Division of Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA),” it said.
According to the report, in January 2018, Misyl Energy transacted business with several OMCs but it was observed that the amount of oil products which were sold to Excel and Union amounting to 1,620,000 and 1,458,000 litres respectively had been recorded in the January returns report as 270,000 and 162,000 litres, leaving out a difference of 1,350,000 and 1,296,000 litres for both OMCs respectively.
Both Union Oil and Excel Oil Company were suspended recently by the regulator, NPA, alongside six other OMCs and some BDCs for allegedly engaging in activities that led to the loss of tax revenue to the Ghanaian government.
The Police report noted that there was no motivation on the part of Misyl Energy to cheat the state by under reporting since the company does not pay tax on products it sells to OMCs.
According to the report, Misyl Energy Limited “had a duty to report all liftings made on a monthly basis and as a BDC which does not pay taxes for these liftings to government; it is still unclear the motivation for the company as an entity to under declare its liftings”.
It stated that judging from the operational structure of this whole transaction, it is quite obvious that the greatest beneficiary of this under declaration could be the OMCs concerned.
The report averred that “it is possible that the OMCs (Excel and Union) in connivance with some officers at the operations department of Misyl, naming Frederick Busumuru and William Boakye, deliberately under declared their January returns report without the express knowledge of Management of the Company.”
It said in any case, it was evident that during investigations, the Management of Misyl had knowledge of how the NPA portal, used in monitoring all transactions, operates and there was no way it will under declare its products knowing that such under declaration would be noticed by NPA.
“It is therefore suggested, subject to approval, that Misyl Energy takes disciplinary action against its officers who were involved in this transaction,” the report recommended.
Misyl Energy subsequently called for the arrest of the two staff who have now been dismissed from the company for the fraudulent transactions.
The NPA has also lifted the suspension placed on the oil company since it has turned out that it has no knowledge of the misbehaviour of the dismissed staff.
BY Melvin Tarlue