The Bill, which was read the third time and passed by a voice vote on Wednesday, is expected to receive Presidential assent to promulgate it into law as stipulated in Article 106 (7) of the 1992 Constitution, which states that “Where a Bill passed by Parliament is presented to the President for assent, he shall signify within seven days after the presentation to the Rt. Hon. Speaker that he assents to the Bill or that he refuses to assent to the Bill unless the Bill has been referred by the President to the Council of State under article 90 of this Constitution.”
The law is expected to help re-establish the Chartered Institute of Taxation, Ghana (CITG) as professional body to promote the advancement and practice of taxation in the country.
It is also expected to enhance CITG’s performance to realise its objects and complement government’s efforts at promoting a sustainable tax system and a stable financial environment for economic growth and development.
The functions of the Institute, under the law, include the regulation of the practice of taxation in the country, determination of the standard of knowledge and skills to be attained by persons seeking to practice taxation and the conduct of qualifying examinations for membership of the Institute.
According to the law, the Institute is expected to prescribe its own professional standards for its members and educate them on the methods and practices necessary to maintain those professional standards.
The law also mandates a person who intends to practice taxation to register with the Institute and pass the qualifying examination conducted by the council for membership of the Institute and complete a practical training for a period determined by the Council in an institution or organization of equivalent status with the Institute.
To achieve its object, the Institute is expected to prescribe and maintain professional standards, educate members on the methods and practices necessary to maintain professional standards as well as ensure that professional standards are maintained by members of the Institute.
The institute, per the new law, is mandated to organize Continuous Professional Development (CPD) courses for members of the Institute as a condition precedent for the renewal of the practicing certificate of members of the Institute, and to encourage research in the subject and practice of taxation generally to secure the well-being and advancement of the tax profession.
The law provides for a governing body of the Institute made up of a 13-member Council, eight of whom shall be members of the Institute elected by members of the Institute at an Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the institute.
The Council will also include representatives from the Ministries of Finance, Education and Justice and Attorney-General’s Department.
Clause five to nine of the law clearly defines the tenure of office of members of the Council, meetings of the Council, and the disclosure of interest.
The Chartered Institute of Taxation, Ghana was established as a professional body registered under the Professional Bodies Registration Act, 1973 (NRCD 143) and is a founding member of the West African Union of Tax Institutes, the Presidency position of which the Institute currently occupies.
The Institute began operating in 1978 as a sole professional body mandated by law to certify tax professionals in Ghana and was incorporated as a limited company on May 2, 1980.
Source: ISD (Gilbert Ankrah)