The desire to build a civilized country with a strong and sound economy is the desire of every patriotic Ghanaian citizen. Tax payment is the demonstration of such a desire, although most income earners see it as a means of exploitation by the government. Tax payment is a voluntarily contribution imposed by the Government on personal income earners, companies, investors, exporters, importers etc. revenue realized from taxation is a major source of revenue to the Government of Ghana, and as such is an important tool used in the development of Ghana and her economy. However, tax evasion which is the willful and deliberate violation of the law in order to escape payment of tax, posses a big threat to income taxation in Ghana as it reduces tax revenue to the Government, thereby hampering economic growth and development. However, this research was undertaken to help increase revenue generated from income tax to the government, by pointing out the challenges faced by tax officials in discharging their lawful duties. Various challenges such as tax evasion on the part of the income taxpayers drastically reduce income tax revenue to the government. This has been a big problem for decades and needs to be properly addressed.
BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY AND PROFILE OF THE ORGANIZATION
After a thorough research on the revenue structure of Ghana, it became evident that revenue from tax was a big source of income to the government of Ghana, and needed much attention because; taxation in Ghana like most West African Countries faced numerous challenges such as Tax Evasion (which is the biggest challenge of Taxation). The main reason for initiating this project is to research on the various weaknesses of tax administration in Ghana, throw more light on the weaknesses, and proffer solutions as well as recommendations for government agencies to deliberate upon and make informed decisions. The study started with casual discussion among tax officials and tax payers concerning their views on taxation in Ghana and their expectations. It later developed into a full research when the researcher developed more interest in the topic, and decided to get more information from tax officials, government agencies, and other secondary documentations.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is under a ministry of Finance and Economical Planning of the Republic of Ghana. It is a public service organization charged with direct tax administration. IRS as a revenue agency is very strategic in the achievement of national goals. It has therefore embarked on a mission of improving the quality of service delivery to taxpayers and the general public through simplifying processes and clarifying roles and procedures. It has set up time frames for prompt completion of tasks in order to render more transparent services to the public. The objective is to create a customer-oriented revenue collection organization focused on providing quality service to enhance voluntary tax compliance. The IRS is assisted in its endeavour at improved quality service delivery by the Ministry of Public Sector Reform. The IRS is headed by a commissioner who is responsible for the day-to-day running of the service. He is subject to the directions of the board on matters policy. He is assisted by five (5) deputy commissioners who head the five(5) main departments: Operations. Research, Planning, and Monitoring. Finance. Administration. Legal services. IRS of Ghana is located in Accra and implements policies formulated by RAGB. There are two (2) regional offices in Greater Accra region and one each in the remaining nine (9) regions of Ghana. Their core functions are monitoring and supervision of district offices.