The Eastern Regional Minister, Hon. Eric Kwakye Darfour, has called on persons earning income from employment, business and investment in the region to be truthful to themselves and show patriotism by filing their income tax returns.
“It is only through filing of returns that we will be able to determine whether we have paid the correct quantum of tax or otherwise to qualify us for a refund if we have overpaid,” he reiterated.
Hon. Eric Kwakye Darfour made this statement at the Regional Launch of the 2019 Tax and Governance Week in Koforidua on the theme; “File your Tax Returns, Pay your Taxes, Move Ghana beyond Aid.”
The Regional Minister added that, the President has directed all ministers of state, government appointees and public officials to endeavor to file their 2018 annual tax returns before the deadline of April 30th 2019.
He further indicated that government has shown commitment in creating prosperity and equal rights for Ghanaians through the various social interventions programmes such as planting for food and jobs, planting for export, one district one factory, etc thus shifting the focus of the economy from taxation to production.
Hon. Eric Kwakye Darfour added that in order for the government to meet the legitimate demands from the people, all should contribute and raise enough revenue domestically so that government would avoid the strict conditionalities attached to loans and grants from development partners.
Delivering a welcome address on behalf of the Commissioner-General, the Assistant Commissioner, Mr. Yaw Aseidu- Danquah stated that the Ghana Revenue Authority has developed an application called the Integrated Tax Application and Preparation System (ITaPS) to enable taxpayers conveniently file their personal income tax returns from the comfort of their homes and offices.
He pointed out that the ITaPS application has nine modules like; Annual Tax Certificate, Tax Clearance Certificate, Withholding Tax Credit Certificate, Withholding Tax Exemption, Monthly and Annual PAYE Returns, Personal Tax Reliefs, Decision Support System for Self-Assessment Estimate and Business Records Manager.
He indicated that the GRA has also developed a payment platform through which operators in the informal sector particularly commercial transport operators and small scale self-employed persons on the tax stamp would pay their quarterly taxes through mobile money in collaboration with some selected banks.
Mr. Aseidu-Danquah assured the public that the full application of sanctions for failure to file annual tax returns on due dates would be applied on defaulting taxpayers and added that, “The legal department has been directed to prosecute all tax offenders in accordance with our determination to let the public know that it is not business as usual at GRA”.