Letter to the Editor: "Some Government Agencies are becoming places of chaos"

Letter to the Editor
The Editor
Stabroek News
June 6, 2017

Dear Editor,

Response to Letter-some government agencies are becoming places of chaos

The Guyana Revenue Authority (GRA) has noted the letter in the May 24, 2017 Edition titled “Some government agencies are becoming places of chaos” in which the writer related the long wait he/she endured to purchase his/her motor vehicle licence. The writer also concluded that ‘some time back it used to be a pleasure doing business at GRA where every department was streamlined so that every transaction was catered for” and “purchasing a motor license used to take a few minutes, because there were many windows operating and attending to the public concerns.”

The writer added later in the letter that in the past, “Even the security personnel used to be au fait with the running of GRA and were able to guide you to the correct line to transact your business” but cited his/her observation that this is no longer the case.  

Editor, we firstly, wish to thank the writer for citing his/her experience, and to apologise for any inconvenience experienced. However, while we acknowledge that upon entering the ground floor of GRA a large number of persons can be seen on a daily basis transacting business, it may ‘seem’ chaotic at first glance, a situation not unique to the GRA but also to other businesses including local commercial banks at peak banking hours. However, the Guyana Revenue Authority has continuously been working assiduously to better its services to taxpayers. We wish to list the following facts which may serve to inform the public as to what pertains to the GRA; the general public, including the letter writer, are welcome to revisit to ascertain whether this is true or not:  

1. Every department IS streamlined and every transaction catered for.

2. The time taken to purchase a Motor Vehicle Licence (MVL) is dependent on the number of persons carrying out the transaction at the time, and all windows at the cashier sections are labelled accordingly as to which tax or fee is being collected. The GRA has implemented its systems to facilitate automated licensing transactions, making same efficient and timely, against the manual system of old.

3. Once a person enters GRA, Security Personnel, Marshalls as well as Receptionists are available and fully au fait to guide persons to their transaction points.

4. The writer indicated that he/she visited the GRA approximately two months ago which would mean he/she visited in March 2017, the period which the GRA usually facilitates a large number of tax returns submission and tax payments.  In this regard, it was likely the ground floor may have been a bit crowded.

5. In April, GRA opened a newly-constructed and fully air-conditioned ‘taxpayers’ waiting area’ to supplement the internal seating facility. This waiting area allows for comfortable seating of taxpayers and persons transacting business and it has replaced the tent which was there previously.

6. In the near future, a transactional numbering system will be introduced thereby further facilitating smoother transactions.

Nonetheless, the GRA apologises to the writer for any inconvenience experienced and would like to assure all taxpayers that the Authority is working assiduously, despite the many constraints presently associated with its Headquarters building, to ensure a more favourable atmosphere of doing business at the Authority.


-END-

Melissa Baird
Manager (ag)
Public Relations Unit
Guyana Revenue Authority