ACC engages NRA on ethics, integrity


September 21, 2018

By Hassan Gbassay Koroma

A cross section of ACC and NRA staff

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) has in a one day workshop engaged top management of the National Revenue Authority (NRA) on ethics and integrity for infective tax compliance.

In his introductory statement at the NRA Wellington Street Office Conference Hall, Director of Systems and Processes Review Department, Rashid Tury, said the one day training workshop was aimed at promoting ethics and integrity of NRA personnel.

He said the training would help to tell the NRA staff about the importance of ethics and integrity and that they would also let them know about offences in the ACC 2008 Act.

The Commissioner General of the National Revenue Authority, Dr. Samuel Jibao, said his new administration was getting to aware that there was a very strong link between integrity and tax compliance.

He said it was very clear that integrity was key even if they wanted a business person to comply, and that as part of their reform measures, they were very keen to having objectivity, accountability and transparency within the revenue administration.

He disclosed that they were even anticipating having internal auditing department that will be purely looking at staff integrity and even looking at the life style of their personnel because those were all factors that could influence tax compliance.

He said the intervention of the ACC was timely and that they were very elated to listen and put to into practice the lectures provided them and ready to cooperate as an institution.

Dr.Jibao noted that integrity  was needed to be taken very seriously because that was the only way they would  be able to see how tax compliance will be increased, adding that it was important for the life style of NRA staff to be looked at instead of running after  traders.

He further that they wanted to build a modern and admirable revenue administration, not an administration that would be targeting twenty percent of GDP, but one that would have an impressive image.
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Also speaking, Deputy Commissioner of the Anti-Corruption Commission, Shollay Davies, said they have placed very high value on the one day workshop which was why they made it possible for it to go on even in the absence of the ACC Commissioner.

He said ethics and integrity are two words that are sometimes used inter-changeably but meant differently, adding that ethics talks about established standard of behaviour while integrity is about truthfulness and honesty.

He said when someone lacks ethics and integrity in his or her work place, such would lead to wastage and that for many organisations including the NRA, which is a revenue mobilisation entity, leads to corruption and other forms of bad things.

He said those qualities cannot come by easily, but that they came through training, mentoring and sometimes through awareness raising, adding that it was for that reason they at the ACC  have decided to be having workshops  of such from time to time, with public sector institutions especially revenue mobilisation institutions like the NRA.

He said the workshop will unveil the ethical issues of dilemma in the day to day activities, adding that sometimes workers do not take them seriously, but  affect the organisation very seriously.

 Shollay Davies noted that they were aware of the fact that to achieve the aim of the training staff members was not going to be easy without the support of the top management of NRA.