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Dalex CEO to government: Sublet tax collection to private sector

Ken Thompson believes privatising revenue collection will inject efficiency and rigour into the government’s efforts to mobilise funds and boost income from taxes

Story Highlights
  • “Whether lose or draw, [our politicians] walk away free. If I lose money there is no accountability and that is one of the biggest weaknesses – absolutely zero skin in the game”

Ken Thompson, the chief executive of Dalex Finance, has suggested to the government that it outsource revenue mobilisation to the private sector in order to widen the tax net.

Thompson believes that privatising revenue collection will also inject efficiency into domestic revenue mobilisation, which could help widen the tax net.

“I will take an axe to the administration of the Budget. I will take an axe to the executive cost. I will take an axe to the social programmes – MASLOC. It is as if you are pouring water into a basket,” Thompson said on The Asaase Breakfast Show on Monday (7 February 2022).

“Why would you give the National Board for Small-Scale Industries [now the Ghana Enterprises Agency] money to disburse? I mean, they have no skin in the game. Give it to the private sector to do,” he said.

Thompson added: “I will also now sublet … get the private sector involved in collection of taxes, and I have said that several times. Property tax – nobody collects property tax. Zone the areas, give it to the private sector operators, let them go for it. Let them collect, and you will get a lot of mileage.”

Accountability culture

Thompson also advocates the adoption of an accountability culture for government officials.

“One of the most important things is to strengthen civil society because we need to have an accountability culture. We don’t have it. Our politicians don’t have any skin in the game.

“Whether lose or draw, they walk away free. If I lose money there is no accountability and that is one of the biggest weaknesses – absolutely zero skin in the game – and it is a shame,” Thompson said.

Fred Dzakpata

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