Thursday, 29 December 2016

A Rice Christmas!

Christmas is a period where lots of cooking go down, but cooking itself became a very important topic in my circles on social media when Muhammadu Buhari chose to tell the whole world that his wife belongs to the kitchen (like the blender and rice cooker, just to name a few items that actually belong to the kitchen). Well common sense will tell anyone who wants to eat to go to the kitchen to cook, buy food at a restaurant and/or (for those who can afford it) pay for the services of a cook. 

The love of my life likes rice so I decided to make her Christmas all about rice. Luckily for me, a friend added a bag of Cindy rice to the hamper he made for me. I nearly gave the rice out just because it wasn't a brand I'm used to but my rice aficionado Bae insisted I keep it (it was good new; I was on a budget. Once she said I should keep it means "problem solved". The money for rice will be used to purchase more mutton). Truth be told, I would have regretted giving out the bag of Cindy rice if I had to taste it somewhere else after. 

For breakfast I prepared her rice porridge (Bae doesn't like broken-rice porridge, and the full grain Cindy rice didn't disappoint), fried some eggs, toasted bread and served it in bed (you should have seen the grin; she had very little idea how her 25th was going to be lit). I asked her to stay in bed all she wants and rest (nah she didn't ... she had episodes of Orange is the New Black to watch) as I did the laundry and prepared mutton vegetable source. That afternoon my kitchen was lit; you can imagine how I wouldn't even hear my phone ring as the washing machine (could only find space at the kitchen) and blender were singing their own Feliz Navidad! Oh, she loved my mutton vegetable source when I served it with rice for lunch.

We prepared groundnut soup the previous weekend so I knew I had to take it out of the freezer around noon to stand any chance of a defrost so it could be used for an "Omo Tuo" supper. Ha! Cindy rice saved me from that "one-hand on a cooker" stress. It was smooth and soft. All I did was just to add some extra water and voila! I enjoy cooking, especially for her, but I learned how to cook from my father who also enjoyed cooking for his family. 

Men who cook don't have two heads and women don't belong to the kitchen.  

Monday, 8 February 2016

The New Income Tax Act (ACT 896) Reduces Your PAYE Burden


Amendments to The Income Tax Act, 2015 (ACT 896) was published by the Daily Graphic on Thursday February 4, 2016. This comes shortly after utility tariff hikes, fuel prices hikes and increases in other withholding taxes. Fortunately, the new PAYE (which is also a withholding tax), does not increase the tax burden of the Ghanaian income earner. For salaried workers, it actually increases their Take Home salary, other things being equal ... and of course, this has always been the case whenever there's an amendment to the Income Tax Act, just that most Ghanaians were not so certain if the rates on each threshold will be maintained in these "perilous times". The nontaxable chargeable income was increased from GHS 132 to GHS 216, and even though the subsequent thresholds on the table above sees increases, the rates are maintained.

Consider this example ... Koo Manu was employed by Abrabo Y3 Hard Company Limited on February 14, 2015. In his appointment letter, his gross monthly salary was stated as GHS 5,310.40 (subject to deductions for SSNIT contributions and income taxes). Under the old Income Tax Act, Koo Manu's take home salary was GHS 4,000, with a tax burden of GHS 1,018.33. This new income tax means that Koo Manu's income tax has reduced to GHS 948.96 ... his new Take Home salary should then read GHS 4,069.37 on his February 2016 payslip! What this means for Abrabo Y3 Hard is the obvious; SAME wage bill, but a reduction in the monthly statutory payments to the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) on behalf of Koo Manu IFO PAYE.

Demand a payslip from your company's accountant today! Make sure you're seeing some upward adjustment in your Take Home and if you have doubts, send me an email and I shall calculate your new PAYE and Take Home for you (for free). Times are hard Chaley, make every pesewa count!