Motor vehicle licensing process and TIN

Dear Editor,

Permit me to respond to a letter written by Rafiq T Khan and published in the Thursday, June 23 edition of the Stabroek News under the caption ‘What is the rationale behind the bureaucratic nonsense at the GRA?’

I must first commend Mr Khan for not only having attended St Stanislaus College, but for his forthrightness in admitting to the humiliation he has been subjecting himself to over the years while living in Guyana under most difficult circumstances. It has always intrigued me as to why a former St Stanislaus College student would not have joined the bandwagon a long time ago, and followed the droves of eminently scholastic individuals to make a more meaningful life for himself and his children in the wider world, where according to him, more than fifty of his classmates are residing, rather than suffer himself to live among the rejects that we all are, having been condemned to live in Guyana.

I, however, do feel sorry for those like Mr Khan who only looks at the negative occurrences and experiences of a few, but brands everyone in the same mould, and sincerely wish to offer my humble apologies for the inconvenience he and his family suffered at the hands of the most inept people that work in Guyana.

On reflection, however, I consider his statement concerning these staff members to be rather courageous, and I hope with the same fervour and enthusiasm that he has chosen to speak out about the ineptitude of those who populate the offices of the Guyana Revenue Authority (GRA), he will use his state of sudden wakefulness to clear the air concerning the reasons for the reluctance of his colleagues in the legal profession to contribute their fair share of taxes before he goes back to sleep.

Editor, I do not think it would be wise to get into a debate over the rationale as to why certain questions are asked and specifics as to the justification for requesting certain information when processing a Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN).

It must be stated that I am not the least interested in belittling anyone who holds himself out as an authority as to who should be living in Guyana and who owes who for wasting their lives in serving the masses of our dear and beloved country.  Suffice to say that a very long time ago, at our annual speech day held at Queen’s College, I distinctly heard the head of state at the time referring to empty vessels making the most sound.

I am also very disappointed with SN’s decision to carry any critical and misleading item on the sale of motor vehicle licences after taking the trouble and going to such extremes to invite your journalist to a live demonstration on how the system works.

It clearly shows that you are not interested in correcting the many misleading and misinformed opinions that have been peddled on the matter. I would therefore not even attempt to try to explain to your readership any misleading information contained in Mr Khan’s letter. Rather, I would want to refer him as well as your wider readership, before they choose again to write from the mount of their high horses on a topic concerning the GRA, to visit our website at www.gra.gov.gy where they will find a wealth of information that has been put there by these very inept people at GRA.  Further, he may wish to call our Tax Hotline on telephone number 227-6060 should he have any more queries regarding any of the services offered by the GRA.

Finally, it should interest Mr Khan to know since he is an attorney at law, that the TIN was implemented by the GRA  in keeping with the legislative provisions contained in the Income Tax (Amendment) (No 2) Act 2006 (Act No 15 of 2006) which was passed by the National Assembly.

The Speaker of the National Assembly Mr Ralph Ramkarran with whom he shares a Chamber, may be more enlightened than me to explain the bureaucratic nonsense concerning the TIN, since GRA merely administers the law.

He may also, if he wishes to, choose to read our publication on the TIN on our website for which I will assist him with the link http://www.gra.gov.gy/The%20Taxpayer %20Identification%20Number.pdf

Yours faithfully,
Khurshid Sattaur
Commissioner-General

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