No data lost in GRA building fire, disaster recovery plan activated

Acting Commissioner General of GRA, Mr Owusu-Amoah addressing journalist. With him are some GRA board members

The Ghana Revenue Authority has announced the activation of its disaster recovery and business continuity plans following the destruction of a part of its head office annex at the Kwame Nkrumah Circle in Accra Sunday by fire.

Addressing journalists at the scene after fighters managed to bring the fire under control, acting Commissioner General of GRA, Ammishaddai Owusu-Amoah, said there is no need to panic as the necessary contingencies have been put in place.

“We want to assure the whole nation that…there is no need for us to panic. As far as GRA is concerned, our disaster recovery plan and our business continuity plan have been activated,” he said

He said management and staff will from Monday, November 2 work to ensure that these plans “work effectively”.

Social media were awash with rumours that the Sunday disaster was the mastermind of arsonists to get rid of documents in a bid to cover up misappropriation of funds at the GRA office.

The top floor has completely been destroyed; ceilings, documents and other items have been burnt

Others claimed some millions of cedis have been burnt in the fire which started about 8:00 a.m. Sunday at the top floor of the two-storey building housing over 280 staff of the GRA Large Taxpayer and Medium Taxpayer units.

But Mr Owusu-Amoah denied claims being made on social media regarding the fire outbreak in the building.

‘Data secured’

The acting Commissioner General stated that no data will be lost as a result of the fire outbreak that has destroyed the entire top floor of the building as well as large volumes of documents.

“As far as our data is concerned, we are confident that at GRA, we have our own system where the main serve sit somewhere and then the backup sit somewhere so data will not be lost,” he assured.

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He, however, could not say same for valuable equipment and physical files, explaining that until they are able to gain entry into the building for inspection, they cannot say what filed have been damaged.

Large volumes of documents and safe were evacuated from the building located along the Ring Road Central in Accra, and transported to safety at the Nima Divisional Police Command when the fire was brought under control Sunday afternoon.

“As far as other equipment and physical files are concerned, since we’ve not been able to access the building at the moment we cannot say as to the extent of damage,” he said.

Business continuity

Mr Owusu-Amoah said from Monday, staff of the large taxpayer office will be relocating to the GRA head office building annex at Kinbu.

Raging fire swept through the top floor of the two-storey building destroying various items, mainly files and tax documentations belonging to the country’s major revenue authority.

It took more than five hours, seven fire tenders and personnel from the Ghana National Fire Service and the Ghana Armed Forces to bring the fire under control.

By Stephen Kwabena Effah||Ghana