The Commissioner of the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), Mr Isaac Crentsil, has asked personnel of the Nation Builders' Corps (NABCO) posted to the division to work hard to ensure that the authority achieves the GH¢17.1 billion target set by the government this year.
Speaking at a parade in Tema last Friday to welcome the 300 personnel into the service after they had undergone a four-week para-military training to prepare them for the task ahead, Mr Crentsil advised them to eschew all forms of negative tendencies and exhibit strict discipline to ensure effective revenue mobilisation.
He said Tema was expected to collect about 70 per cent of the GRA’s target.
Mr Crentsil recalled that due to so many challenges, revenue collection for last year went down by 18.7 per cent, something which he said had never happened.
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He said as part of measures to achieve the target, the service had come up with strategies to enhance revenue mobilisation, adding that the NABCO recruits, working under the supervision of senior customs officers, would be assigned to various sections such as warehousing and transit goods to support the implementation of the measures and strategies aimed at raising the needed revenue.
The Customs Division Commissioner said some of the recruits would also be deployed to engage in trade facilitation, while others would be engaged in tax education campaigns to increase tax compliance and address incidents of tax evasion.
He asked them to bring to bear on the job, the skills and values they learnt during the para-military training, such as discipline, time management, teamwork, perseverance and leadership, in support of the reforms taking place in the GRA aimed at raising revenue targets.
Mr Crentsil pointed out that the interns were joining the Customs Division at a time when so many reforms had been introduced, particularly in the area of professionalism, to promote voluntary compliance to get people to pay the required duties.
The Nation Builders' Corps (NABCO) programme is a government’s initiative to address graduate unemployment. So far, about 90,000 out of the expected 100,000 graduates have been engaged in the programme.
Under the programme, recruits are attached to various service and public sector institutions such as health, education, agriculture, technology, governance and the revenue mobilisation agencies.