Businesses have been urged to obtain Tax Identification Numbers, TIN, in order to benefit from the GH¢600 million stimulus package.
On March 27, 2020, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo after announcing reliefs such as an extension of tax filing date from April to June; 2% reduction of interest rates by banks effective April 1, 2020, and grant of 6 months moratorium on principal repayment by banks to entities in the airline and hospitality industries.
Also, a GH¢1.2 billion Coronavirus Alleviation Programme, CAP, to help households and businesses survive the economic crisis, GH¢600 million from the CAP was dedicated as soft loans for businesses, especially those in the small and medium enterprises sector to alleviate the impact of the pandemic on their businesses.
But the Executive Director of the National Board for Small Scale Industries, NBSSI, Madam Kosi Yankeh-Ayeh, in an interview said businesses without TIN cannot benefit from the package. “No TIN numbers, No stimulus,” she said.
Will the distribution of the stimulus package be fair?
She also assured the general public that her firm will be fair in the distribution of the GH¢600 million package.
The Executive Director of NBSSI said the disbursements will be transparent with external auditors in place to audit the funds, hence there is no need to entertain fear of introducing partisan politics into the allocation.
She made this comment after the CEO of Dalex Finance, Ken Thompson, and others raised concerns that the NBSSI is too political to handle this assignment.
Mr Thompson suggested that the money should rather be given to financial institutions to handle and not the NBSSI.
In an interview on Monday, May 11, 2020, he said:
Ken Thompson – CEO of Dalex Finance
“…[The NBSSI] suffers from the legacy of politics, it suffers from money going out and not being able to account because it was done on political basis… I have a problem with that.”
But the NBSSI Executive Director said there will be no partisan politics in the distribution of the package.
“I can assure that there will be no partisan politics in this and the reason why we say that is that this is open and that is why we brought technology in…there will be external auditors as well. We don’t even know the beneficiaries. It is open so let us allow people to apply. What I challenge people to do is to actually show up with the data that is needed and fill the right data.”
“People ask why NBSSI in this. We have been doing this for a long time but nobody has talked about politics…, they are only assuming but let us not make the assumption. We have 178 offices in 178 districts called business advisory centres. We are in almost all the sixteen regional capitals, we provide the service, we have been doing it,” she added.
According to her, NBSSI has for the past three years, have facilitated up to GH¢45 million, and have support 100,000+ people build their capacity and no one has associated politics in doing that.
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