Eric Agbezuke, a member of the Nation Builders Corp (NABCO), has received recognition from the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) for his vigilante actions that resulted in the capture of a Nigerian smuggling counterfeit money into Ghana.
At the International Customs Day event in Accra, the young NABCO beneficiary received a diploma and citation of merit.
On January 17, 2023, Eric Agbezuke, who was assigned to one of the unofficial routes (beats) at the Aflao border, raised the alert on what he believed to be undeclared commodities being brought into Aflao by a guy riding a motorcycle.
At the time of his arrest, the 53-year-old suspect was reportedly in possession of a Nigerian passport.
Customs reports that the suspect, identified as Arimu Timothy Adipoe, was apprehended at one of the checkpoints along the Aflao border on a motorcycle with the assistance of other security services when he tried to enter the nation with the phony currency.
The cash is roughly equivalent to GH1.5 million when converted.
As the globe celebrates the 70th year of Customs Day with the subject, Nurturing the Next Generation: Promoting a Culture of Knowledge-Sharing and Professional Pride in Customs, this act of vigilance was greatly applauded and acknowledged by the institution.
Other workers who succeeded during that time were also recognized and awarded certificates.
Seidu Iddi Iddisah, Commissioner of the Customs Division of GRA, claims that despite the government ending the NABCO program, plans are in place to keep roughly 100 of the employees following an audit.
He said that because of the NABCO personnel’s addition, the service’s surveillance and revenue mobilization operations have increased. Customs is also understaffed.
Mr. Iddi pointed out that the NABCO employees who would be hired by Customs would go through additional training and be given a one-year contract designed to keep the qualified ones.
Dr. John Kumah, the deputy minister of finance, pleaded with the Ghana Tax Authority to make an effort to increase revenue collection this year in order to improve the revenue-to-GDP ratio gaps, which are currently hovering around 14% of GDP.
The deputy minister made the statement on behalf of Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta, noting that the issues facing the government’s debt exchange scheme and the current economic climate necessitate new tactics being used by the GRA’s customs division.
“Our revenue to GDP remains the lowest in the sub-region at about 14%. Despite exceeding 2022 revenue targets, I will encourage the GRA to adopt innovative strategies to rake in more revenue. I believe that, when the 2023 target of about 105 Billion is achieved, that will reduce the gap to some 54 billion in order to hit the government’s target of 20% revenue to GDP” he said in his address.
In his speech, the commissioner of customs, Seidu Iddi Iddisah, mentioned that the Ghana Revenue Authority had set a 2023 revenue target of 105 billion cedis, which he charged customs officials to put all of their effort into achieving.