Focus on revising the budget to meet the needs of Ghanaians – NDC MPs to NPP

Focus on revising the budget to meet the needs of Ghanaians – NDC MPs to NPP

After rejecting the 2022 budget statement presented in Parliament for approval, the Minority caucus has spelt out their demands on what they want to be changed in the said budget to draw them to the negotiation table to support the budget.

On Friday 26th November 2021 as Parliament was deliberating on issues regarding the budget, a disagreement ensued between the Majority, the Speaker of Parliament and the Minority which led to the Majority staging a walkout before the budget was later rejected by the Minority side that remained seated in the chamber.

According to a statement issued by Minority leader Haruna Iddrissu on Sunday, November 28 2021, they are calling on the government to abandon the Electronic transaction levy and Agyapa deal in the budget.

 They are also calling on the government to find a way forward for the ravaging tidal waves in Keta in the Volta Region and also review the benchmark values on imported products.

“We hope the NPP government will do what is right and proper when considering a revised budget. The NPP Government should critically take on board the view of the Minority and sentiments of the Ghanaian populace and bring a Budget that is acceptable and address the issues of the general public. The NDC Members of Parliament have no issue with approving a Budget that addresses the generality of the concerns of the Ghanaian people.”

Read the Minority’s full demands below.

The NPP Government should rather concentrate on bringing a revised Budget that will, among others, address the following:

1. Suspend the Electronic Transaction Levy (E-Levy): The Government should suspend the E-Levy and properly engage stakeholders to agree on a reasonable policy. How can mobile money payments, bank transfers, merchant payments, and inward remittances be charged 1.75 per cent? The policy is not retrogressive, not pro-poor, and does not support the much-touted digitalisation agenda and cash-lite economy that we all yearn for.

 2. Withdrawal of Agyapa: The NDC Minority will not support any collateralisation of our revenues, particularly mineral resources. The future of our country will be bleak if we continue in that regard. We cannot jeopardise the future generations of our country just for our present desires.

3. Provide for Tidal Waves Disaster: The Government should incorporate in its revised Budget adequate measures to address the issue relating to the Tidal Waves Disaster in Keta and other communities. The victims should be supported. And the Phase II of the Blekusu Coastal Protection Project must find space in the Budget.

4. Properly re-construct the wording relating to the Aker Energy:  Relating to GNPC acquisition of stake from Aker Energy and AGM Petroleum, the revised Budget should reconstruct paragraph 829 of the rejected Budget to reflect the decision of the House as captured on 6th August 2021 Votes and Proceedings of Parliament.

5. Review the Benchmark Value for Imports: Government should, in a revised Budget, reconsider paragraph 247 of the rejected Budget which sought to restore the Benchmark Values of imports by suspending the 50 per cent discount on selected General Goods and the 30 per cent discount on vehicles. Some concession should be given to the importers.

Read the full statement here.

By: Stella Annan | Twitter @activetvgh

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