The recent announcement by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) that incomes earned by teachers in both private and public schools from extra classes are liable to taxation, has met fierce resistance from teachers.

Speaking an Interview with Ekourba Gyasi on ADOM Dwaso Nsem on Thursday, the leadership of the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT) and the National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT), in unison condemned the move by the IRS.

The President of GNAT, Joseph Adjei said the action if implemented by the IRS will make teachers charge high fees for extra classes to compensate for the tax component since the rational for holding extra classes in schools is to supplement the meagre income of teachers .

“As far as I am concerned extra classes has been banned in schools by the GES and if the IRS says it is going to deduct tax from it means it has been legalized and we are going to go into negotiation and charge very, very big,” he said.

Christian Adai Poku, Vice president of NAGRAT, on his part shared the views of his GNAT colleague and added that taxing additional incomes earned by teachers will reduce morale in the teaching service.

Mr William Charles Sefah-Agyebeng, Assistant Commissioner (Training) of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), made the announcement last week when he delivered a paper on “Your Tax Returns- A Fair Way of Assessing Your Income Tax” at a seminar attended by proprietors of private basic and second cycle schools in the Volta Region in Ho.

The seminar was part of a series being held across the country to educate private school owners on procedures for filing tax returns, their obligations to the state and tax administration as it affected them.
Later in an interview on Adom Dwaso Nsem, Mr. Sefah-Agyebeng, reiterated the fact that public sector teachers and other public sector workers were not exempt from paying taxes on incomes earned from other jobs besides what they were paid from the consolidated fund.

He however said the tax is only deductible on only extra classes authorized by schools and not the ones held by teachers at the homes of students and pupils.

He added that it was the responsibility of heads of schools under whose watch the extra-tuition-for-fees were held to file tax returns on such extra incomes for tax assessment by the IRS.

He said development levies, bookshops, extra classes, canteen and transportation services, rent from structures, Parent Teacher Association (PTA) dues and other cash and physical donations were also incomes that must be included in returns and not school fees alone.

Author: Kojo Addo (Adom FM)

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