The Attorney General and Minister for Justice, Mr. Godfred Yeboah Dame, says he is worried about tax evasion by Ghanaians. He reminded lawyers to always honour this obligation, since this is a gross violation of professional rules.
Mr. Yeboah Dame was speaking at the Annual General Conference of the Ghana Bar Association in Bolgatanga. He said lawyers are bound by their profession to demonstrate the highest level of ethical behaviour and integrity at all times.
The conference is running on the theme “Ensuring an Increase in Revenue Mobilization Through Taxation for the Purpose of Accelerated Development: The Role of the Lawyer”.
For speakers at the 2021 Annual General Conference, tax constitutes one of the three pillars of revenue mobilization, which is a necessary ingredient in satisfying the ever-growing needs of the country for infrastructure and other social economic amenities.
The other pillars include industrialization and building institutions to minimize revenue losses. They also believe that the country’s rapid economic growth should increase its sizable capacity and enable a much more significant share of the private sector’s resources to government in the form of taxes. From 1877 to 2021, Ghana has produced 7,867 lawyers. Out of the number, 4,882 are licensed and are in active service.
The Upper East Regional President of the Ghana Bar Association, Mr. Amoak Afoko, appealed to government to consider establishing a law school in the region. He says this will help lessen the plight of the increasing number of people from the five regions of the north who have to travel long distances to the south to study law.
The Upper East Regional Minister, Mr. Stephen Yakubu, complained about the low number of legal professionals up north. According to him, only 39 lawyers are currently practicing in the five regions of the north.
The President of the Upper East Regional House of Chiefs, Chiana Pio, Pe Dituudini Adiana Ayagitam charged members of the GBA to execute their duties diligently as expected.
The Attorney General and Minister for Justice, Mr. Godfred Yeboah Dame, said the office of the Special Prosecutor and the Ministry of Justice and Attorney General as the protector of public interest, are duty bound to ensure compliance of Ghana’s tax laws, boosting the industrialization agenda and the raising adequate revenue to address the gaps in the country’s budget.
The Attorney General and Minister for Justice admitted that the failure of lawyers in Ghana to discharge their full tax obligations is not entirely their fault.