Commissioner General of the Guyana Revenue Authority (GRA), Godfrey Statia on Thursday afternoon stated that measures will soon be implemented to ensure that no one – employees nor tax payers- will be allowed into GRA with their smartphones.
“Very soon, there will be no smartphones entering my building. [This means] both officers who work with me, and also tax payers,” he said during a press conference held at the company’s headquarters in Camp Street.
Statia posited that it is his belief that this “no cellphone policy” will ensure that the private information of tax payers are not leaked.
“We need to stamp it out because any time I find anybody leaking tax payers’ information out there, they have to go,” the Commissioner General said.
Recently, representatives of the Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU) had requested that GRA provide them with tax information regarding the alleged theft of state assets.
However, the tax entity maintained that strict secrecy laws prevented it from releasing the relevant information. While, the law does indeed give GRA some space to release the tax information, once it is authorized by the President, the tax authority reportedly expressed reservations about the information remaining confidential.
Still, SOCU took the matter to the High Court. However, in March of this year, Chief Justice (ag), Yonette Cummings-Edwards, ruled in favor of GRA not releasing the tax payers’ information.