Importers Association Questions Legality of Mahama’s Special Operations Unit

The Importers and Exporters Association of Ghana is questioning the legal mandate of the special operations unit constituted by President John Mahama. The special operations unit is expected to visit the various ports on Tuesday to implement some new strategies aimed at arresting and prosecuting tax evaders. Government last year formed the taskforce to run checks to maximize revenue generation across the different ports in the country. According to the executive secretary of the Importers and Exporters Association of Ghana, Sampson Asaki, they will institute a court action by close of day tomorrow to challenge their operation. Mr. Asaki said: “Are they mandated by law to come and conduct any examination at the port, the point is no, if they are just staff at the Presidency, what serious mandate do they have.” Meanwhile, the Presidential Special Operations Taskforce has commenced the third phase of current projects to tighten security measures at the Tema Port. According to the Spokesperson of the taskforce, Dr. Clement Apaak, “the exercise will help plug all revenue-generating leakages at the ports.” The Importers and Exporters Association of Ghana has also announced plans to petition President Mahama and parliament against moves by the trade ministry to champion a ban of some items into the country. According to Mr. Asaki, “there is seeming confusion on the policy front following Ghana and ECOWAS commitment to sign onto the EPA”. This will guarantee European companies 50 percent access to the Ghanaian and West African market. Mr. Samson Asaki said government must only consider such a plan in the long term.