Chamber of Freight Backs Labianca Against OSP

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The Chamber of Freight and Trade (CFT) has condemned what it calls an attempt by the Office of the Special Prosecutor (OSP) to link Ms Eunice Jacqueline Buah Asomah-Hinneh to an alleged act of influence peddling to gain an advantage for her import business.  

In a complaint filed by a private citizen to the Office of the Special Prosecutor, MS. Hinneh was also accused of using her influence as a Member of the council of state and Board Member of the  Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority to reduce benchmark values for imported frozen products for her company, Labianca – Rafano Frozen Foods Company Limited and Yoba Capital Limited.

However, in reaction, the CFT stated that the GRA and the Labianca Group of Companies did not falter in any way, “The chamber strongly believes that both Labianca and the Customs division of GRA acted according to the Laws of Ghana, specifically the Customs Act 2015 (Act 891). It is never out of place or illegal for any importer for this matter Labianca Company Limited to engage Customs after the first three years of operations for “customs advance ruling” under Section 12 of the Customs Act (Act 891).”

The CFT further noted that “The company or their Agents may not have known that there is a provision in the Customs Act that allow for an engagement with Customs for value acceptance within their first three years of operations.”

It emphasized, “This provision in the Customs Act does not in any way discriminate against any person on condition of their position, religion, status, tribe, Colour or creed; it is open to every importer and exporter, Ghanaians and foreigners. Hence, applying the Law to the position of the director and owner of the company is neither here nor there. By Law, the Customs Division of the GRA is the only agency mandated for the classification and valuation of Cargo imported or exported out of Ghana, Sections 66 and 67 of Act 891 in reference. Therefore, importer like Labianca has no hand in the method of valuation and values customs may apply to their Cargo at all time.”

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