The Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) has held its 2017 Staff and Stakeholders’ Awards with an appeal to all taxpayers to take advantage of the tax amnesty period to regularize and straighten their tax records before the amnesty period expires at the end of August, 2018.
Commissioner-General of the GRA, Emmanuel Kofi Nti, who made the appeal, however, cautioned tax evaders who flout the laws of the GRA to desist from such acts, lamenting that such composure will have negative reflections on the economy in the long run.
“We are counting on your support and plead with the few who try to avoid the payment of duty to put a stop to it as it harms the economy to a very large extent, and GRA is going to be hard on them. This notion of business as usual will no longer be tolerated.
“We are ready to reward where necessary and at the same time impose sanctions on taxpayers who deliberately plot to understate or evade their obligations,” he cautioned.
The awards were held to recognise taxpayers, institutions and individuals who contributed immensely towards the success of the revenue mobilisation efforts of the authority during the period under review.
It was also to recognise the work of employees of the authority who had excelled in their various endeavours over the period while a total of 16 institutions and individuals were awarded at the ceremony, held in Accra.
At the event, Newmont Ghana Gold Limited was crowned the best taxpayer in the large taxpayer category while the second best taxpayer for the same category went to Standard Chartered Bank Limited. Fidelity Ghana Limited emerged the most improved taxpayer in the domestic tax revenue division.
The best taxpayer under the Customs Division went to Ghana Oil Company Limited; Vivo Energy Ghana Limited received the award for the second best taxpayer for the same category while Total Petroleum came third.
Citi 97.3 FM was adjudged as the best media house in tax information dissemination for the year 2017.
The award was presented to the station in recognition of its consistent discussions on tax issues, which affected revenue mobilisation for the year under review.
The Overall Best for the GRA in 2017 went to Junior Appiah. For his prize, he won an all-expense-paid trip to Dubai with family.
The glamorous awards night, held at the Movenpick Ambassador Hotel on Friday, February 9, sought to reward loyal working staff who dedicated time and efforts to ensure the seamless running of the institution in the year 2017.
Emmanuel Kofi Nti urged staff to bring their collective strength to bear to achieve organisational targets. “To our staff awardees, I wish to urge you to work harder than before,” he said.
“I believe honouring you our staff and our taxpayers would also serve as motivation to other employees to also strive harder than before and also be accorded the necessary recognition.”
Nti also appealed to taxpayers who are not registered with GRA to partner the institution to contribute to paying their taxes as the authority strives to build an environment that is safe, fair and sustainable for businesses to thrive.