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Business News Mon, 15 Oct 2018

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Group petitions CHRAJ to probe GRA over implementation of CTN

Good Governance Advocacy Group Ghana (GGAGG) has petitioned the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) to investigate the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) in connection with the implementation of Cargo Tracking Note (CTN).

According to the group, GRA does not have the mandate to carry out the function or service of the Advanced Shipment Information (ASHI) to Cargo Tracking Notes (CTN) and for that reason cannot sublet or give a contract in that regard.

Good Governance Advocacy Group Ghana (GGAGG) also believes that the process with which the sole sourcing of CTN Ghana Limited by the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) was done constitutes an illegality since the process did not follow the public procurement act 2003 (ACT 663).

The Commissioner-General of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), Emmanuel Kofi Nti has served notice that the Cargo Tracking Note (CTN) policy will start on Monday, October 15, 2018, despite a suit challenging its implementation.

But GGAGG in their petition described the move by the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) as an organized fraud against the state hence CHRAJ should probe the process leading to the implementation of the CTN.

The Research Department of Good Governance Advocacy Group Ghana (GGAGG) what the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) to ascertain “Whether Ghana revenue authority (GRA) has the mandate to give such a contract and whether there have not been some administrative breaches again whether the rights of Ghanaians are not being abused, What could cause Ghana Revenue Authority to solely source the contract? If the laws have been flouted by Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) also whether there is a syndicate formed with the main interest to create loot and share state money and that What could account for this government to blatantly ignore the previous contract signed by the Ghana Shippers’ Authority and if the action of the government of Ghana cannot lead to a huge judgement debt and many more”



Below is the full petition

THE COMMISSIONER,

COMMISSION ON HUMAN RIGHT AND ADMINISTRATIVE JUSTICE (CHRAJ)

ACCRA, GHANA.

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Dear Mr. Joseph Akanjoluer Whittal,

RE ADVANCED SHIPMENT INFORMATION (ASHI) OR CARGO TRACKING NOTES (CTN)

We, members of the above-mentioned public-cooperate governance institution with the quest of giving quality policy analysis and advisory through quality research, write with the greatest shockwave of our lives.

We write with reference to CHRAJ ACT 1993(ACT 456) which gives the commission that you head the right to investigate complaints of Violations of Fundamental Rights and Freedoms, Injustice, Corruption, abuse of power, and unfair treatment of any person by a public officer in the exercise of his official duties, and the right to investigate complaints concerning the functioning of the PUBLIC SERVICE and the ADMINISTRATIVE ORGANS of state.

We write to make a formal complaint about GHANA REVENUE AUTHORITY and CTN GHANA LIMITED.

We write to accuse Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) and owners of CTN Ghana Limited of;

FORMING A SYNDICATE TO TRANSACT, PURSUE AND PROMOTE A DUBIOUS DEAL AT GHANA SEAPORTS. CREATING AN AVENUE FOR EITHER STEALING OR DEFRAUDING THE STATE OF GHANA BY FALSE PRETENSE LOOTING OF PUBLIC FUNDS THROUGH DUBIOUS MEANS and CAUSING FINANCIAL LOSS TO THE STATE OF GHANA

Mr. Commissioner, we are writing to bring to your attention the need to commence investigation into our accusations and act accordingly within your powers to curtail the illegalities therein.

Mr. Commissioner, the Research Department of Good Governance Advocacy Group Ghana (GGAGG) has uncovered a SYNDICATE formed with the sole intention to DEFRAUD THE STATE OF GHANA of her scanty financial resources.

Mr. Commissioner, this was discovered during our investigation into the issues surrounding the implementation of the Advanced Shipment Information (ASHI) or Cargo Tracking Notes (CTN) system at the seaports of Ghana that His Excellency the president has suspended.

Mr. Commissioner, we have over the previous weeks been conducting an enquiry into the issues surrounding the implementation of the Advanced Shipment Information (ASHI) or Cargo Tracking Notes (CTN) system at the seaports of Ghana. We have had several encounters with the general trading public and various stakeholders for clarification on the issues. We have been working so hard within this period aiming at uncovering the hidden plans and protecting the public purse.

Mr. Commissioner, we wish to state emphatically that this is a public interest issue which if not dealt with could render the state if Ghana into jeopardy as the ploy is potent enough to create an avenue for embezzlement and corruption.

Mr. Commissioner, this is the main bases for asking your office to protect the interest of all of us, citizens of this great nation, who are more superior to all the institutions of the state by instituting a strong investigation into this scandal.

Mr. Commissioner, to help guide you during your competent commission’s investigation, below are some findings during our pre-enquiry.

MAIN ISSUES SURROUNDING ADVANCED SHIPMENT INFORMATION (ASHI) OR CARGO TRACKING NOTES (CTN) SYSTEM

BACKGROUND

1.1 After nearly 10 years of several meetings and talks, member Countries of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) resolved negotiations on WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) with objectives aiming at boosting global trade by expediting the MOVEMENT, RELEASE AND CLEARANCE of goods.

1.2 Article 7 of this WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) discusses RELEASE AND CLEARANCE OF GOODS.

1.3 It is behind this backdrop that in late 2013, Government of Ghana (GoG), a member of the World Trade Organisation (WTO), abiding by the agreement of her mother Organisation especially considering the advantages of the article 7 of the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA), decide to act through Ghana Shippers’ Authority (GSA), the state agency in charge of Ghana’s maritime industry under the auspices of Transport Ministry.

1.4 On October 17, 2013, Ghana Shippers’ Authority (GSA) published the “Request for Expression of Interest (EOI) for an International Competitive Tender” for the implementation of the Advanced Shipment Information (ASHI) at Ghana’s seaports in fulfillment of L.I. 2190.

FOOTNOTE: Looking at the nature of the services i.e. AN ELECTRONIC PLATFORM TO RECEIVE PRE-ARRIVAL CARGO INFORMATION IN ADVANCE requirement, it was necessary an International Competitive Tender be done in accordance with the Procurement Act, 2003 (ACT 663).

1.5 A number of companies, both local and foreign participated in the International Competitive Tender which was organised by the Ghana Shippers’ Authority (GSA) under the auspices of Transport Ministry.

1.6 A company by name Anterser Afrique won the bid.

1.7 In December 2014, the Ghana Shippers’ Authority (GSA) issued notice to all shipping lines and the trading public of the commencement of the implementation of the Advanced Shipment Information (ASHI) or Cargo Tracking Notes (CTN) system in March 1, 2015 under the management of a company by name Antaser Afrique BVBA as the sole worldwide general agent.

1.8 In view of the fact that some stakeholders did not have much understanding, the Transport Minister then advised that there was a need for further clarifications about the Advanced Shipment Information (ASHI) system to the general trading public and all stakeholders, coupled with Government’s policy on the establishment of a Single Window Platform with the involvement of key stakeholders caused the suspension of the implementation of the system in March 1, 2015 as was scheduled and later in May 2015.

1.9 The company that has a contract with the Ghana Shippers’ Authority embarked on series of presentation to stakeholders. These presentations were to educate the entire trading public and all stakeholders.

FOOTNOTE: It is worth reechoing that at this stage there had been a contract signed between the government of Ghana and Antaser Afrique BVBA as the sole worldwide general agent.



FAST-TRACK TO 2017, WHEN GOVERNMENT CHANGED AND THERE WAS A TRANSITION.

1.10 During the transition, the Ghana Shippers’ Authority (GSA) led by Dr. Kofi Mbiah made the incoming government aware of such a policy and a contract signed to effect or implement Advanced Shipment Information (ASHI).

1.11 After a thorough discussion to explain the system to the incoming government, a request was made to the effect that the Ghana Shippers’ Authority (GSA) arranges for a presentation to guide the new government to understand the scope of the system.

1.12 There had to be another presentation to the new government by Anterser Afrique at the premises of Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), which took place.

1.13 Members of this SYNDICATE whom we are accusing after the presentation dubiously decided to use another option to implement the system.

1.14 From our investigation, we can construe that members of this SYNDICATE are some POLITICIANS, CIVIL AND PUBLIC SERVANTS and some PRIVATE PERSONS, who are owners of CTN GHANA LIMITED.

1.15 We understand that they all together formed this SYNDICATE, with the thinking that the Advanced Shipment Information (ASHI) was a REVENUE COLLECTION policy. Hence, their attempt to hide behind Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) to operate.

FOOTNOTE: It is important to mention that Advanced Shipment Information (ASHI) is NOT a Revenue Collection Policy but simply a system that seeks to help shippers and importers save cost and speed up the clearing process. The Ghana Shippers Authority (GSA) initiated the Advanced Shipment Information (ASHI) system aiming mainly at providing shippers and relevant government agencies with advance information on their shipment. Per this explanation, the understanding of the system is simply between shippers from EXPORTING COUNTRIES i.e. Countries from where goods are being shipped to Ghana. In this case, it is a service which is billed on shippers and NOT Government of Ghana (GoG) or any of its agencies especially like what Ghana Revenue Authority is ILLEGALLY doing.

1.16 They clandestinely change the name from Advanced Shipment Information (ASHI) to Cargo Tracking Notes (CTN) just so that the previous company that has the contract would have been swindled into believing that Cargo Tracking Notes (CTN) being implemented by CTN Ghana Limited is different from Advanced Shipment Information (ASHI).

1.17 What this SYNDICATE forgot was the fact that their plan was not going to materialize since they were going to be dealing with the same stakeholders who were dealing with the first company that had the contract from Ghana Shippers’ Authority (GSA).

FOOTNOTE: In fact, our discussions with various stakeholders have given them syndicate away as all their attempts to lobby them stakeholders with promises and cash have failed.

1.18 They then used the name of the project to form a company so smartly that one is deceived into believing that CTN GHANA LTD is an international company tailor-made for the policy. The project name is Cargo Tracking Note(CTN) and the Company name is also CTN Ghana limited.

FOOTNOTE: WE REMARK WITHOUT ANY SHRED OF AMBIGUITY THAT ADVANCED SHIPMENT INFORMATION (ASHI) AND CARGO TRACKING NOTES (CTN) ARE SAME AS THEY BOTH SEEK TO DO THE SAME THING.

FLOUTING OF THE LAW BY GHANA REVENUE AUTHORITY AND CTN GHANA LIMITED

1.18.1 On December 2017, the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), without recourse to the PUBLIC PROCUREMENT ACT, 2003 (ACT 663), “appointed this new company by name CTN Ghana Limited as SOLE REPRESENTATIVE for the implementation of Cargo Tracking Notes (CTN) System to and from Ghana with rest of the world” patently disregarding the earlier procedurally thorough Procurement Process gone through by the Ghana Shippers’ Authority (GSA) in accordance with the Public Procurement Act, 2003 (ACT 663).

1.19 GRA and CTN Ghana Limited have also infringed on Ghana Shippers’ Authority Regulations 2012 (L.I. 2190) which gives ONLY the Authority the mandate to operate and negotiate everything shipment or maritime in Ghana.

About Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) Administrative breaches

Mr. Commissioner, going through the legally mandated functions of the Ghana Revenue Authority in GHANA REVENUE ACT, 2009 ACT 791, it is unambiguous that GRA does NOT have the mandate to carry out the function or service of the Advanced Shipment Information (ASHI) to Cargo Tracking Notes (CTN) and for that reason cannot sublet or give a contract in that regard.

Mr. Commissioner, we also believe that the process with which the SOLE SOURCING of CTN GHANA LIMITED by the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) was done constitutes an ILLEGALITY since the process did not follow the PUBLIC PROCUREMENT ACT 2003 (ACT 663).

Mr. Commissioner, Besides, Legislative Instrument LI 2190 gives Ghana Shippers Authority the mandate to carry out such duties and not Ghana Revenue Authority.

Persons that form part of the syndicate

Mr. Emmanuel Kofi Nti Commissioner General GRA, Christian Tetteh Sottie (Technical Adviser to the Commissioner General, Mr. Isaac Crentsil, Commissioner, Customs Division Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), Robert Kingsford Kutin, Board Chairman of Ghana Maritime Authority and Mr. Carlos Kingsley Ahenkorah Board Member Ghana Revenue Authority, are all persons that we have found out to be part of the syndicate against the state.



ABOUT CTN GHANA Limited

Our investigations into what the company CTN Ghana Limited is about have revealed that;

CTN Ghana Limited was formed by a husband and wife, Mr. and Mrs. Cole CTN Ghana Limited was purposely formed to take this ILLEGAL Cargo Tracking Note (CTN) contract.

It is for this reason that the contract was SOLELY SOURCED to CTN Ghana Limited.

Unfortunately for the syndicate, CTN Ghana Limited has no CAPACITY whatsoever to implement the Advanced Shipment Information (ASHI) or Cargo Tracking Notes (CTN).

This is because CTN Ghana Limited is operating on a STANDALONE or UNCONNECTED platform and is NOT connected to any platform beyond the shores of Ghana.

Meanwhile, to be able to execute or implement the Advanced Shipment Information (ASHI) or Cargo Tracking Notes (CTN), your company must have an integrated Technology Network strongly supported by International Maritime Bureau (IMB) of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), World Trade Organisation Platforms such as; World Customs Organisation (WCO), International Criminal Police Organisation ICPO, International Maritime Organisation IMO and World Bank.

Per this information we are stating without any ambiguity that CTN Ghana Limited has no capacity to execute or implement Advanced Shipment Information (ASHI) or Cargo Tracking Notes (CTN) since it has NO system or software to do Pre validation, verification, validation of information.

OOTNOTE: We are so sure about this because our investigations have given us all the company details which have exposed their incompetence as they are not connected to any World Trade Organisation Platform.

PRESIDENT’S SUSPENSION OF ADVANCED SHIPMENT INFORMATION (ASHI) OR CARGO TRACKING NOTES (CTN)

Mr. Commissioner, in view of the facts aforementioned the president of the republic, suspended the implementation since it was met with a very stiff opposition from all stakeholders.

Mr. Commissioner before the suspension of the policy, Government and the Stakeholders were in disagreement over the implementation of the Cargo Tracking Notes (CTN) policy.

Mr. Commissioner, whereas stakeholders claim the implementation of the policy would bring them extra cost, the government insist the new arrangement will come with no cost to the importer.

Mr. Commissioner, this is where we got so curious to want to know how government was going to implement the policy. Furtherance to that the Technical Adviser to the Commissioner General Mr. Christian Tetteh Sottie in a radio interview mentioned that the cost of the Advanced Shipment Information (ASHI) or Cargo Tracking Notes (CTN) system “would be borne by Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA)”

Mr. Commissioner, we were much alarmed and wanted to find out how Government of Ghana through Ghana Revenue Authority was going the fund the implementation of this policy.

Mr. Commissioner, it would surprise you to know that our investigation has uncovered the greatest scandal ever to hit the nation Ghana.

Committee work, findings and report

Mr. Commissioner, after the president suspended the policy, there was an improvised committee formed to make recommendations to the government concerning the implementation of the policy. The committee sat on the issues to want to delve into the matters. However, we tried to get a good report for the president, we were always ambushed by these same people who have formed a syndicate to want to carry out their evil agenda.

Mr. Commissioner, in the end the report that was generated has been changed to suit that which would misled the president to endorse the ILLEGALITY.

Mr. Commissioner, meanwhile, the president is expected to make a pronouncement by 15th October 2018



Conclusion and Observation

We, in view of the chronology of the events, can confirm that it is very obvious that in all that Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) has done;

1. There has been an abuse of precurement methods.

2. There has been an act of abuse of public office for dubuious gains.

3. There has been an Act to loost state money by some persons.

4. There is a ploy to cause financial loss to the state of Ghana by Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) due to the self-seeking interest of some individual staff at the state institution.

We, by this press statement, are respectfully seeking to draw the attention of Ghanaians especially the taxpayers whose money is going down the drain due to this SYNDICATE by Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) and CTN Ghana Limited.

This is because;

i. Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), perLI 2190 has NO mandate to deal with Advanced Shipment Information (ASHI) or Cargo Tracking Notes (CTN) but It is rather the Ghana Shippers’ Authority (GSA).

FOOTNOTE: We are by this questioning the grounds with which Ghana Revenue Authority is operating? Since GRA is not mandated to be doing maritime jobs or signing maritime contracts.

ii. Even though there is an Existing contract between government of Ghana and Anterser Afrique, Ghana Revenue Authority forgoes it and tries all possible means to form a SYNDICATE with a company that does not qualify for such a service with the aim to DUPE GOVERNMENT OF GHANA (GOG). We are alarmed and can only believe that some people want to make money from the taxpayers and also cause financial loss through a judgement debt by disallowing the first contractor to execute its work.



iii. Besides, we without mincing words wish to further state unambiguously that the SOLE APPOINTMENT, or for the use of a more technical term SOLE SOURCING of the ILLEGAL CONTRACT to CTN Ghana Ltd by the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) to implement the Advanced Shipment Information (ASHI) or Cargo Tracking Notes (CTN) system is NOT only out of the legal boundaries of the Ghana Revenue Authority Act, 2009 (ACT 791), but also a perpendicular breach of the Public Procurement Act, 2003 (ACT 663), particularly , Section 40 which deals exhaustively with Single-source procurement.

iv. Once more, we during the process of investigation realized that there is a syndicate between Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) and a company by name CTN Ghana Limited. This syndicate was just formed with the sole common interest to defraud the state by false pretenses.

v. We state without shredding that some staff at the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) and some politicians are behind the syndicate to rob the state from her scanty resources.

vi. Buttressing the point above, we for instance have heard one Christian Tetteh Sottie, the Tax Advisor to the Commissioner of Customs mention that the cost of the Advanced Shipment Information (ASHI) or Cargo Tracking Notes (CTN) system “would be borne by Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA)”

vii. This assertion was due to resoundingly massive disapproval from the general trading public that we shall not pay any more monies to the state Authorities as regards the \

viii. We have since his remark been terrified to the effect that his comment smacks of two (2) things. It is either the technical advisor is ignorant of the Advanced Shipment Information (ASHI) or Cargo Tracking Notes (CTN) system or he together with SYNDICATE are doing an underground move to dupe the taxpayer. This is because, if you understand the processes and the method of the system, it would be simple for anyone to know that it has nothing to do with Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) except for the fact that they need to be furnished with data to aid them in their calculation of duties.

Our request

Mr. Commissioner, we respectfully submit this petition looking forward to your investigation into;

I. Whether Ghana revenue authority (GRA) has the mandate to give such a contract.

II. Whether there have not been some administrative breaches.

III. Whether the rights of Ghanaians are not being abused.

IV. What could cause Ghana Revenue Authority to SOLELY SOURCE the contract.

V.If the laws have been flouted by Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA)

VI. Whether there is a syndicate formed with the main interest to create loot and share the money

VII. What could account for this government to blatantly ignore the previous contracts signed by the Ghana Shippers’ Authority.

VIII. Whether the action of the government of Ghana cannot lead to a huge judgement debt etc.

Mr. Commissioner, we appreciate the effort and responsiveness with which you are seen to be ready to expedite action on complaints. If you have any further questions or about resolution options please don’t hesitate to contact us onggaggh@gmail.com or ournkplisto@gmail.com or on 0502714206

Source: thepressradio.com

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