In a statement, it said it acts in accordance with due process when applying for customs advance rulings.
It also said it has been tax compliant “and has discharged all its obligations dutifully.”
A Council of State member, Eunice Jacqueline Buah Asomah-Hinneh, who owns Labianca Company and is a former member of the Board of Directors of the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority, has come under scrutiny after the Special Prosecutor released a report indicting her for allegedly using her position to sidestep laid down procedures.
She was accused of using her position to get a favourable decision from the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority, leading to a reduction in her company’s tax liabilities.
The Special Prosecutor has since recovered GH¢1 million from Labianca.
The money was recovered as a shortfall in revenue arising from the issuance of the unlawful customs advance, meant to be duties paid to the state following the importation of the frozen foods.
Labianca however, denies the claim that its CEO procured customs advance ruling through “influence peddling or trading of influence”.
The company also hinted at legal action on the matter.
“We take the findings of the Office of the Special Prosecutor seriously and have consequently instructed our lawyers to take the necessary action on this matter.”
Find below the full statement
OSP Report is at Variance with Events – Labianca Company Limited
Management of La Bianca Company Limited is saddened to learn of the recent publication of the alleged report by the Office of Special Prosecutor regarding the activities of the company and its subsequent discussions in the media.
Although the Office of the Special Prosecutor has not written formally to the company on its findings as required by due process and fair “trial” rules, we believe that the report findings are at variance with our recollection of events and submissions made to the office.
We deny that the company and its Chief Executive Officer, Mrs. Asomah-Hinneh, procured customs advance ruling through “influence peddling or trading of influence”.
We take the findings of the Office of the Special Prosecutor seriously and have consequently instructed our lawyers to take the necessary action on this matter.
Over the years, the company has, in accordance with due process, applied for customs advance rulings under the Customs Act 2015 (Act 891). Indeed, over the years, the company has been tax compliant and has discharged all its obligations dutifully. Due to the nature of the operations of importers like us, the Ghana Revenue Authority, per Act 891, conducts periodic post clearance audits to determine possible undervaluation or overpayments of taxes.
Consequently, the assumption of jurisdiction by the Office of the Special Prosecutor on such post clearance audit and our settlement of such taxes arising from such an audit is not synonymous with corruption and or corruption-related activities by the company. The several communications between the Office of the Special Prosecutor and the company confirm this.
As importers of quality frozen foods, we will always comply with the laws of Ghana.
We are committed to contributing our quota to national development by investing right in our cold store infrastructure, and value chain, creating jobs, and paying taxes.