Management, political interference leading to revenue loss – GRA workers
Workers of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) are accusing their management and some politicians of interference in their work.
They say this development is leading to significant losses of potential revenue to the state.
Although they fell short of mentioning names, they said the extent of interference is such that it will make it difficult for the tax collection body to meet its revenue targets for this year.Top Stories On Myjoyonline(25-7-19)
At a durbar in Accra Thursday, the workers raised concerns about this and other cases as impediments hampering the operations of the GRA.
They cite, for instance, the irregular recruitment of personnel into the service whose competence usually is in doubt due to their poor performance.
“They are creating enmity between us [staff]…there are some people who came through political appointment who have their children as clearing agents and they use exemptions to clear goods.
“Is that not a conflict of interest? Those people had the job on a silver platter so they think that they should help or work for their godfathers or superiors at the detriment of the state,” one of the angry staff told Joy News.
Secretary of the National Union of GRA Workers, Ken Tweneboakodua sent notice to the political class to put a stop to the practice of ordering custom officers and GRA staff to discharge and release impounded contraband goods.
“We want to turn our negative target for the first half of the year into positives. We are stepping down as union leaders and we are going down on the roads, ports, offices [to collect monies],” he said.
He said they are not only going to name and shame their officers who connive and condone with others to unjustifiably take from the state in their line of work.
“We will also name and shame those who engage in excess political interference in our work. Importers are businessmen who want to make more profits and will do anything to get that profit.”
Government as part of the ECOWAS protocol removed a number of Customs officers from the vantage points to allow unhindered movement of vehicles.
The Union is, however, calling on government to bring the men back because their absence is impacting on revenue generation.
“The officers were on the road to track goods in transit. Now people clear their goods meant for Burkina Faso, for instance, and they end up in Ghana because the men are not there to check them,” Mr Tweneboakodua said.
The Union after rejecting a 5% increment bonus announced by the leadership gave the board a one-week ultimatum to respond to their claims.