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The Ministry of Finance and the Ghana Revenue Authority, GRA, have jointly inaugurated a new Tax Audit and Quality Assurance Unit to ensure a centralized audit planning process and guarantee quality auditing.
The unit will among other things enhance transparency in the tax space, while working to eliminate corrupt acts in revenue mobilization in the country.
Inaugurating the unit, the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, said it will also prevent acts of corruption on the part of tax payers.
“Some auditors in charge of auditing jobs sometimes get away with unprofessional practices because no one audits their work when they are done, so many wrongs are buried upon the issuance of their reports never to be resurrected again, and we want to change that. So there should be an audit to audit the Auditor concept. Once they know their work may be reviewed, they will not compromise on the integrity of their work” the Minister explained.
A survey conducted by the Ghana Integrity Initiative, anti-corruption Consortium, confirmed that bribery is a key factor in the failure by the GRA to meet their revenue targets.
Per the survey, nearly two thirds of the close to eighteen thousand respondents in the survey believed that corruption is on the rise in Ghana.
This is what government seeks to curb to operate a free and transparent revenue base.
The Commissioner General of the GRA, Reverend Ammishaddai Owusu-Amoah, says the Unit will help the Commission improve revenue collection.
“If you as a tax Authority want to be able to wipe away the issue of corruption and integrity, it requires a definite, purposeful act to move ahead otherwise no matter what you do, we will not be able to get the needed result. Therefore GRA as part of our strategic direction aim at coming out with a definite action that will ensure that perception or the reality of corruption as far audit is concerned is reduced to a significant level in GRA.
Our commitment to this course is absolute” he stated.