Colonel Kwadwo Damoah (Retired), Commissioner, Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), has commended Customs Officers at the Tema Port for their dedication and professionalism in their line of duty.
He said their commitment resulted in the increase in their revenue target of GHC10.9 billion in 2020 to over GHC12billion, an excess of GHC1.6 billion.
According to him, Tema alone collected around 80 percent of the total Customs collection throughout the country, and that was a remarkable feat worth an applaud.
“The target for this year, even though daunting, with the increase over last year’s figure, we have confidence in you because you are up to the task and will work even hard to deliver our target as projected,” he said.
Col. Damoah was addressing Customs officers at the Tema Port during a working visit, said in spite of the COVID-19 pandemic, which came with various restrictions, the Division still defied the odds to achieve its targets.
He said the mandate of Customs was premised on three key areas: security, trade facilitation, and revenue generation, and explained that for adequate revenue to be generated for national development, there was the need for a secure environment and great security.
The Commissioner indicated that he was aware of their numerous challenges in their operation, and said issues of human resources were atop of his priorities and would continue to ensure that officers were content with their work in order to deliver on their annual revenue targets.
“You can put up the best systems but if the people are not treated well and their welfare and wellbeing is not prioritized, the systems may fail; so, I am conscious about all of that including promotions, recruitments, and logistics among others,” he added.
Assistant Commissioner Julius Aweya Kantum, Tema Sector Commander, Customs Division also commended the officers at the ports for their dedication and diligence to duty and appealed to them to renew their commitments in order to rake in more revenue for national development.
He said: “it is at the Tema Port that most of the arrests in respect of arms and ammunition are made, and Customs officers are always at the forefront of those exercises,” and explained that with the risk involved, it required heightened vigilance by the officers.
“You must ensure vigilance and examine critically to prevent the importation of illegal and prohibited items because we are not just revenue officers, but officers who have to work in the interest of national security,” he advised.
Madam Joyce Ama Akesseh, Chief Revenue Officer and Head of MPS Scan, who took the Commissioner, media, and other officials around the scanning processes and operations said, enough security systems had been put in place, adequate analysis to check container numbers and truck identifications.