Commissioner-General of the Guyana Revenue Authority (GRA) Godfrey Statia has said that imported vehicles which have been seized by the Authority are no longer being sold via the open bid process since it was discovered that persons were manipulating the system.
According to the Commissioner-General in a recent press conference “we have stopped the format of the auctions. Instead of having someone buy the vehicle at the hit of the hammer, we now have closed tenders. The reason for that is that there was collusion (involved).”
Statia said persons brought in high-end vehicles, allowed them to be seized and then returned and bid for the very vehicles and won them.
Realising this, he said the GRA began inviting closed bids.
Moreover, he noted that in instances where the bidders do not meet the criteria, the vehicles are not sold but are either donated to the government or utilised by the GRA.
“GRA has not bought any new vehicles since I am here. We have been sending it to our fleet,” he said.
The GRA had said that tax evasion and cross-border smuggling of items such as vehicles remain countrywide problems with which the authority is grappling even in this New Year.