The Tema Collection Sector of the Customs Division, Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) has held a pulling-out ceremony for its' outgoing Sector Commander, Assistant Commissioner Julius Aweya Kantum (Rtd) after 37 years of service.
A citation presented to the outgoing sector commander stated that his meticulous vetting of documents on the Integrated Customs Management System (ICUM) platform to establish corrections of values, and the origin of goods among others was the guiding principle of his administration.
“These skills and knowledge manifested in high tax revenue performance where the collection significantly reduced the tax variance of negative 16.39 per cent recorded in the year 2020 to negative 3.95 per cent for the year 2021.
“To climax this success, the collection recorded a variance of positive 7.83 per cent for the year 2022.”
Mr Seidu Iddisah Iddrisu, Commissioner, Customs Division of the GRA, commended Mr Kantum for his contribution toward the growth and expansion of the Division since 1985.
Mr Iddrisu added that his steadfast attitude and due diligence towards his job were truly inspirational for others who were encouraged to work harder and set new benchmarks of achievements.
He added that the ongoing sector commander has shown leadership in his service to Customs and therefore retires as a father of many.
He announced that the Tema Collection would now be under the leadership of Assistant Commissioner Christiana Odi Adjei, who was the Sector Commander Accra Collection and has served in various capacities over the years in Tema, Kotoka International Airport, and Customs Headquarters, among others.
The Customs Commissioner entreated all officers, NABCO personnel and stakeholders to give the incoming commander their unflinching support to replicate her achievement and continue the success chalked by the outgoing commander.
Mr Kantum, on his turn, recounted when he joined Customs in 1985 as a Junior Collection Assistant III and rose through the ranks until his retirement as the Sector Commander for the Tema Collection.
He said in the past 37 years, he served under 20 plus commissioners and has been in the thick of things from the days of the Automated System for Customs Data (ASYCUDA) through Ghana Community Network Service (GCNet), Pre-Shipment inspection to Gateway Services Limited and Destination Inspection.
As well as from Brussels' definition of value to Transaction value in 2000; and then to the resumption of the core functions of Customs in 2015.
“I have been privileged to play leading roles in these various stages in our organization's life, and I discharged my duties, I believe, creditably with integrity. I have tried to be and hope I remain relevant and significant in Ghana Customs,” he said.
He expressed joy at helping the Tema Collection to exceed its revenue targets by 7.83 per cent in 2022 before retiring from the service.
He said it was no secret that when Tema Collection performs very well and exceeds its target by a high percentage, it took care of the shortfalls of other collections to ensure that the national target was achieved or exceeded.
He advised the youth in the service to discharge their duties professionally and work as tax collectors instead of being facilitators of tax evasion.
Madam Theresa Potakey, Second-in-command at the Tema Collection, Customs GRA said Tema Collection revenue mobilization strategies were enhanced with Mr Kantums' vast knowledge in Customs operations, coupled with his experiences he was able to achieve revenue targets continually for the past three years of his tenure.