GRA Get Powers To Prosecute 'Notorious' Tax Offenders
The Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) is asking income earning persons, potential and existing recalcitrant taxpayers to change their ways since its prosecution policy will deal with persons who violate the country's tax laws.
The Authority vows to deal with non-compliance, tax evasion and tax customs fraud.
The policy outlines the circumstances under which tax and customs offenders may be prosecuted and also standardizes processes and procedures for prosecution by the GRA.
According to the GRA, the launch of the policy is part of measures to fulfil its core mandate of mobilising revenue for national development.
The policy is intended to be used by all GRA officers who are mandated to enforce the laws governing taxes and duties in Ghana.
Speaking at the launch of the policy in Kumasi, Commissioner General of the GRA, Emmanuel Kofi Nti emphasized that his outfit will not use the new strategy to harass taxpayers.
“The prosecution will be used to complement administrative actions contained in the tax laws for non-compliance to ensure that there is a constant and regular flow of revenue to the national coffers”, he added
Mr. Kofi Nti indicated that the prosecution of tax offenders under the policy will be done to the highest ethical and professional standards, transparency and accountability to achieve the most appropriate and effective results.
The DFID is providing technical support and capacity building of prosecutors and investigators as well as the provision of needed logistics in the implementation of the policy.
The courts, Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO), Bureau of National Investigations (BNI), the police and other state agencies are part of stakeholders to play key roles in the effective implementation of the policy.
Ashanti Regional Minister, Simon Osei Mensah urged the judiciary to expedite the hearing of such prosecution cases when they come before them.
Mr. Osei Mensah also called on the GRA to embark on an intensive educational campaign to create the needed awareness on Ghana's tax laws.
The Director in charge of Multilateral Relations at the Finance Ministry, Michael Ayensu called on the GRA to intensify tax education to ensure compliance by the public.