JoyNews investigations have uncovered how some staff of the Ghana Revenue Authority aid businesses bidding for contracts to circumvent laid down procedures in the acquisition tax clearance certificates for them.

With a paltry sum of ¢1,500, officials can forge tax records for newly created companies without any evidence of work.

With the knowledge of using a phoney business company, the investigative reporter approached the GRA staff. As a result, we have decided to call Maame to assist in acquiring a tax clearance certificate.

She indicated that I will be required to deposit once I need a tax clearance certificate.

“A clearance certificate with the VAT record would cost you ¢1,500,” she explained.
She further gave an insight into how the syndicate works.

“We are short of certificates, but some offices have it. Those who work on that schedule have hoarded it. That’s why it costs that much,” she added.

She indicated that the reason why she couldn’t get me a tax clearance certificate at her office is that ‘it’s a strict setting”.

“But, I would use another office which is the Agbogbloshie GRA office which is lax in working on it for you,” she revealed.

In less than three days, my tax clearance certificate for barely a week old business was ready.

A quick look at the document with the inscription – tax clearance certificate – and its values would pass off as authentic. But, every detail on it is forged.

It was prepared by GRA staff at the Agbogbloshie office, covering three years of assessment and VAT certificate. It reads… “provisionally not liable to tax, deposit ¢500.

This should help the investigative team secure a government contract with ease.

Head of the Domestic Tax Revenue Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority, Edward Gyamerah, said a tax clearance certificate is a compliance tool that the GRA uses to ensure a taxpayer has complied with their tax obligations.

“Once a tax clearance certificate is given to you, it means you have complied with your tax obligations to the state,” he added.

Touching on the JoyNews expose, he said once an individual registers a company, they must register with the Ghana Revenue Authority.

“Once you have registered the company, you can put in a request for a tax clearance certificate to transact business,” he explained.

He, however, indicated that it’s fraudulent for a newly created company to be placed in a picture suggesting they have been paying tax when that’s not the case.

He indicated that they will investigate to establish how the tax clearance certificate was issued, and “if it’s found out it was done fraudulently, sanctions will be applied to the tax officer and the company.”

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