The Organized Labour of the Ghana Revenue Authority(GRA) Workers’ Union has condemned Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia over his alleged harassment during tax collection.

The New Patriotic Party (NPP) flagbearer expressed concerns over the alleged harassment of businesses by GRA officials under the guise of tax collection during a discussion with members of the Ghana Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GNCCI) on Wednesday.

He attributed the situation to the GRA’s practice of setting unrealistic targets for its officers, leading to excessive taxation of existing businesses.

However, the staff union has in a statement described Dr Bawumia’s comments as “unfortunate”, viewing them as a slight against the diligent efforts of employees.

“We would like to state unequivocally that, we the workers of GRA find this statement unfortunate and consider it as an attack on the efforts of the hard-working staff of the Authority which if not discontinued, would incur the displeasure of workers, disrupt revenue collection efforts and breed industrial disharmony,” the statement read in parts.

According to the union, such statements could lead to worker discontent, hinder revenue collection, and cause industrial unrest.

They highlighted the contradiction in Dr Bawumia’s stance, given his role as Head of the Economic Management Team and his awareness of the government-set targets for the Authority through the Ministry of Finance.

“Indeed, the least we expect from the Vice President, if he would not appreciate the efforts of the Authority in raising Tax Revenue, is not to put the lives of our hardworking staff at risk with such unfortunate comments.”

The statement further underscored the potential negative impact of the Vice President’s statements on future revenue mobilization and appealed to President Nana Akufo-Addo to address the issue.

“We also call on the President of the Republic of Ghana, H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the GRA Board, Civil Society organizations and all well-meaning Ghanaians to admonish political functionaries to desist from making such pronouncements and intervene swiftly as this statement poses a major risk to revenue mobilization efforts going forward,” it added.

Read the full statement below: