Tax amnesty should prompt us to honour our tax obligations

The Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) is determined to clamp down on tax defaulters, be they business entities or private individuals, as soon as the tax amnesty expires.

The amnesty expires at the end of third quarter this year (2018) and the GRA is aiming to pursue all defaulters and expose them for failing to perform a civic responsibility; and thus they will face the full rigours of the law.   The amnesty is basically to give an opportunity to all those in default, so that in one way or another they can make good on their obligations.

The GRA Commissioner, Mr. Emmanuel Nti, told selected journalists his outfit will intensify prosecutorial powers, and that his outfit is determined to achieve the target given the GRA for the year. President Akufo-Addo told Ghanaians that he is pursuing a Ghana Beyond Aid, and to achieve this feat there is  a need to strengthen internal revenue-generating sources to fund our development requirements without going cup-in-hand looking for assistance to develop.

Therefore, citizens and corporate entities paying their tax obligations is of utmost importance, since for far too long a number of Ghanaians have abdicated their civic responsibility – leaving only a few hundred public sector workers to shoulder the burden of paying taxes.

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The thinking now is to widen the tax net and get onboard as many people as who are eligible to start honouring their obligations, so that we can generate internal funds to build roads, schools, hospitals and generally take care of ourselves.

Honouring tax obligations means providing the state with revenue to pursue development projects and any other obligations it has to the citizenry. We fail to honour our tax obligations yet expect government to take care of our everyday needs – and blame it when things are not right. Governance is a shared responsibility, and we have to play our part while government plays its role in tandem.

We have to be responsible citizens and honour our tax obligations, or else we have no business assailing government at every given opportunity.

 

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