The Office of the Special Prosecutor has obtained GHC1,074 million from a business owned by a member of the Council of State.
According to graphiconline, the sum comes from Labianca Company Limited, a frozen food company owned by Eunice Jacqueline Buah Asomah-Hinneh, and it indicates a shortfall in import duties paid to the government.
An investigation report from the Office of the Special Prosecutor with the date of August 3, 2022 and the following title revealed this: “Report of Investigation into Alleged Commission of Corruption and Corruption Related Offences involving Labianca Group of Companies and the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority”.
The investigative report claims that Ms. Asomah-Hinneh influenced the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) in a favorable manner, resulting in a decrease in the tax obligations of Labianca Limited. She did this by using her authority as a member of the Council of State and a member of the Board of Directors of the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA).
The OSP cited Joseph Adu Kyei, a deputy commissioner of customs in charge of operations, for issuing what it deemed to be an illegal customs advance ruling. According to the report, this resulted in lower benchmark values for the commodities Labianca Limited imported, which in turn resulted in lower tax liabilities for the business with the government.
“The OSP finds that there is strong evidence to suggest that Mr Kyei’s decision to issue a customs advance ruling for the applicant was procured through influence peddling or trading of influence by Ms Asomah-Hinneh by employing her position as a member of the Council of State and member of the Board of Directors of the GPHA,” the report signed by the Special Prosecutor, Kissi Agyebeng, stated.
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