Ghanaians have been urged to honour their tax obligations to the state to help boost national development.
Speaking at a sensitisation workshop organised by the Weija branch of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) on the benefits a nation deriveds from tax revenue in Accra yesterday, the Head of the Weija District Office of the GRA, Mr Stephen Konduah, said when taxpayers failed to pay their taxes as stipulated in law, development was hindered.
He said when citizens failed to pay their taxes, development plans by the government in areas such as education, transport, health, water, sanitation, security and energy, for example, would not be realised.
“The ability to provide social goods as are mentioned in national budgets is cost related and this can only be met by raising the appropriate taxes from the citizens,” he said.
According to him, when the people were adequately sensitised to tax and related issues, they would become emboldened to exercise their rights and obligations and contribute meaningfully towards national development.
He urged taxpayers to endeavour to pay their taxes regularly to boost national income for development.
A lecturer at the GRA Training School, Mr Lawrence Hotsonyame, said when taxpayers paid their taxes regularly, the revenue that would be generated would enhance the processes of development in the country.
He said revenue generated from the submission of taxes could be used to establish industries and contribute to the lowering of the unemployment rate in the country.
Acquire identification numbers
Mr Hotsonyame said people who paid their taxes must file reports and acquire tax identification numbers to smoothen their business transactions and free themselves from persecution or harassment from tax authorities.
He said the unauthorised collection of taxes, the inability to file tax returns and filing false tax statements were some offences that were penalised by law.
He reiterated the essence of paying taxes, saying that it enabled the citizenry to contribute their quota to national development.
Mr Hotsonyame said failure to file tax returns created a build-up of penalties to be paid by offenders.