By Godwill Arthur-Mensah, GNA
Accra, Dec. 1, GNA — The Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) says it was unable to immediately ascertain the extent of damage caused by the inferno at its Large and Medium Taxpayer Office at the Ring Road, near Kwame Nkrumah Interchange on Sunday.
The Authority said it has activated its Contingency Recovery and Business Continuity plans to ensure smooth business transactions, adding that, its back-up system would safeguard its data from getting lost.
Mr Ammishaddai Owusu-Amoah, Acting Commissioner-General of GRA, told journalists during a press briefing at the scene of the inferno in Accra, to allay the fears of the public and clear the air about misinformation going round the social media and other media platforms.
He said the Authority had a Contingency Recovery Plan, therefore, all the staff at the Ring Road would be relocated to its Headquarters at Kinbu on Monday, December 2, to ensure smooth business transactions.
‘Therefore all taxpayers who are required to do business or pay tax are encouraged to go to the GRA Head Office at Kinbu. We have made provision to ensure that our staff who are currently located in this building are available to attend to them,’’Mr Owusu-Amoah said.
He said those who were part of the medium taxpayers for Adabraka Office would be served at the Adabraka Small Taxpayer Office, near the Adabraka Police Station.
Mr Owusu-Amoah could not state the cause of the inferno or the extent of damage and was of the belief that, after the dust is settled, they could provide further details about the fire incident to the public.
The Acting Commissioner-General called for calm since the Authority had instituted contingency plans to manage the situation.
Recounting how the GRA Management received the news on the fire outbreak, Mr Owusu-Amoah said they received report from the security personnel at the Large-Scale Taxpayer Office at Ring Road, near Kwame Nkrumah Interchange early Sunday morning that, smoke was emanating from the offices.
At 0900 hours when GRA officials got to the place, he said, personnel from the Ghana National Fire Service were busily battling to douse the inferno, and were being assisted by the National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO), the Ghana Armed Forces and the Ghana Police Service.
The building, he said, housed the Adabraka Large and Medium Taxpayer Office of the GRA, with about 280 staff working there.
Meanwhile, the GNA gathered that GNFS fire fighters used more than eight fire tenders to douse the inferno.
At the time GNA got to the scene at 11:30 hours, there was large crowd gathered at the scene, while the Police were at the scene to control traffic and prevent people from getting closer to the building.
Mr Nii Moi Pappoe, a taxi driver, told the GNA that, if the GNFS had helicopter to fight fire outbreaks, they would have extinguished the inferno in no time and urged government to re-tool the Service to be more efficient in its operations.GNA