The Minority group in Parliament appears not to be impressed by the government’s intention to engage the public on the importance of the introduction of the E-levy and considers it as just a reactionary tactic to impress investors.
Though there has been stiff opposition to the passage of the levy, Finance Minister Ken Ofori Atta during a press briefing on Wednesday revealed the government’s intention to sensitize the citizens on the levy.
But Mr. Adongo who is a member of Parliament’s Finance Committee is not impressed with the move so far chided the government saying the timing of the engagement with the public clearly shows the government is not serious.
“Parliament is resuming next week, and he [Finance Minister] is now contemplating engaging Ghanaians. Clearly, you can see they are not serious.”
“They are basically playing around with the emotions and monies of investors who are losing them. They are being warned, and it has all been a reaction to the downgrade of the country,” Mr. Adongo said.
Mr. Adongo is of the view that the surest way to revive the economy is not through the E-levy, but by cutting down on expenditure.
“The comment by Ghanaians is that we are spending much more than we can raise. Cut back on the frivolous profligate expenditures so that you are able to live within your means,” Mr. Adongo said.
The government revealed that following the conclusion of extensive consultations on the controversial levy, it will relay the bill before Parliament.
The issue of the introduction of E-levy commenced during the 2022 budget statement when the government announced the proposed levy of 1.75% on electronic transactions, which includes mobile-money payments.
Opposers of the levy have cautioned that this new levy will negatively impact the Fintech space, as well as hurt low-income people and those outside the formal banking sector.
Meanwhile, the government has, however, argued the levy would widen the tax net and that it could raise an extra GH¢6.9 billion in 2022.
Parliament in 2021 was not able to approve the Electronic Transaction Levy before the end of sittings in 2021, after a contentious approval process that even resulted in a brawl in Parliament following an attempt to consider it under a certificate of urgency.