If it’ll take IMF to instill sanity into Ghana’s economic mgt, so be it, drop the E-levy – Manteaw

Dr Steve Manteaw
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Chairman of the Civil Society Platform on Oil and Gas, Dr Steve Manteaw, has told the government to listen to the people who have raised concerns against the introduction of the E-levy.

He explained that the government is acting on behalf of the people of this country therefore, if the same people are opposed to the policy proposal, it is only right that the authority listens to them by dropping it from the budget.

Dr Manteaw further indicated that there are several avenues in which the government can generate the required revenue for development.

He mentioned cutting down waste and and also fighting corruption as some of the ways that can be done.

He told 3news.com in an interview that “if people the majority of the people are against it the government has to listen to them, you are acting in their interest and if they are not ready to pay the E-levy you cannot force them.

“If it will take IMF to instill sanity into our economic management, so be it. The situation we find ourselves would have been avoided if government listened a little bit to concerns raised about SHS financing, corruption, and profligate lifestyle of the president.”

The Minority in Parliament has asked the Majority to wait for Speaker Alban Bagbin to return from his trip outside of the jurisdiction before they re-lay the E-Levy in Parliament.

Deputy Minority leader, James Klutse Avedzi said the Minority does not want any of the deputies to preside over the House when the levy is relayed in order to avert the brawls that occurred in the house last year.

“The speaker travels this weekend and will not be available next week , I think our advise to the Majority side is that we should wait until the speaker comes back.

“We want the speaker to preside then we will vote on the matter and once that is done, the end result will be a decision of the House whether the motion would be lost or completely or would be carried, that is something that would be done.

“But we want the speaker to be there we don’t want any of the deputies to sit so that what happened in 2021 should repeat itself.”

The much-anticipated consideration of the Electronic Transfer Levy Bill, popularly known as e-levy, has been postponed to the next sitting of Parliament.

Despite attempts by the Majority Caucus to get the Bill read for the second and third times, the House took a decision to adjourn sitting to Tuesday, February 1.

The Speaker, Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin, who had been in the precincts of Parliament since morning, had to leave around 5:00pm because there were no signs members were ready to consider passage of the Bill.

Though the Majority Leader, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, had announced passage of the Bill on Friday even if it went deep into the night, it appears his opposite number was not in favour of it.

Our Parliamentary Correspondent, Komla Klutse, reported of hot exchanges between Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, who is also the Member of Parliament for Suame Constituency, and the Minority Chief Whip, Alhai Mohammed-Mubarak Muntaka, who is also MP for Asawase Constituency.

Earlier, the Minister of Finance, Ken Ofori-Atta, who had announced the controversial policy in his budget statement and financial policy on behalf of government on Wednesday, November 17, 2021, had met the Minority to talk members of that caucus into getting the Bill passed.

His proposal to reduce the tax from 1.75 percent to 1.5 percent was rejected, still.

The debate on the Bill is expected to attract equal strength as the Speaker is said to be on his way out of the country again for his periodic medical review in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

By Laud Nartey|3news.com|Ghana

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