Minority will eventually support E-levy – Former NPP MP

Haruna Iddrisu (Left) Minority Leader and Muntaka Mubarak Minority Chief whip
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A former Member of Parliament for Okaikwei North , Issah Fuseini, has expressed optimism that the opposition lawmakers will eventually agree with the Majority to pass the E-levy.

According to him, the E-levy is needed to help the government generate revenue to undertake development projects in the country.

“Over time our brothers (Minority) will agree with us on the e-levy so that we can pass it,” he said on the Key Points on TV3 Saturday February 12.

The Minority have opposed the introduction of the E-levy. They described it as obnoxious and draconian. The Minority Leader Haruna Iddrisu said the proposal is a disincentive to the growth of digital economy.

To that end, he said, his side would not support it.

Speaking at a post budget workshop in Ho on Saturday November 20, he said “Mr Speaker, understandably, we see that the Minister of Finance seeks to introduce some measures including the now popularly declared e-levy or digital levy  as some have quite named it.

“Mr Speaker, our concern is whether the e-levy itself is not and will not be a disincentive to the growth of digital economy in our country . We are convinced that the e-levy may as well even be a disincentive to investment  and a disincentive to private sector development in our country. We in the minority may not and will not support government  with the introduction of that particular e-levy . We are unable to build national consensus  on that particular matter.”

The General Secretary of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Johnson Asiedu Nketia had also suggested to the government to go to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) instead of relying on the E-levy.

Mr Asiedu Nketia noted that the IMF is capable and willing to support Ghana to deal with its fiscal challenges but with conditionalities.

The Akufo-Addo administration, he said, is scared of the conditionalities that will check, in his view, the reckless spending by the administration.

Speaking on the New Day show on T3V with Johnnie Hughes on Monday February 7, he recounted the benefit that Ghana derived when the NDC administration went to the Bretton Woods institution for support.

The NDC went to the IMF due to the difficulties they faced as a result of the implementation of policies the Kufuor administration bequeathed to them.

“In the last quarter of his administration he announced single spine. Immediately NDC took over in 2019 all the workers said if kufuoir had been in power he would have implemented single

“If the first four years was very turbulent for us so we went through all those difficulties and we tried to implement the single spine. Even the World Bank said it may not be a good thing but we did. The result was that at the end, we ended up having closer to 70 per cent of the nation’s revenue going into wage’s and salaries.

“This was not sustainable so we said we must do something about. We called forum at Senchi and opened the books…we did this and eventually we went to IMF and it helped us manage so we went to the 2026 under the IMFprogramme.”

He further indicated that the NDC warned the Akufo-Addo administration againt the recurrent expdnetire because it was going to ballon the debt situiation.

“We kept waring that increase in recurrent expenditure will lead to borrowing that we will not be able to pay the interest of the loan,” he said.

Asked whether President Akufo-Addo should go to the IMF, he answered “I think it is something that they have to consider. if it is the only that will take us out of this problem then the earlier the better.”

But the Finance Minister Ken Ofori Atta insisted that Ghana would not return to the IMF for support in order to deal with the challenges that the local economy is going through at the moment.

Speaking at the 3rd Townhall meeting on the E-levy on Thursday February 10, at the the Radache Hotel in Tamale in the Northern Region, he indicated that a return to the Bretton Woods institution will have dire consequences.

He also indicated that Ghana had the capacity to raise domestic revenue for development.

Mr Ofori-Atta who had earlier stated that the government would not go back to the IMF insisted that “I can tell you, as my colleague deputy said, we are not going back to the IMF, whatever we do we are not [going back].

“The consequences are dire, we are a proud nation, we have the resources , we have that capacity, don’t let anybody tell you … we are not people of short-sighted, we need to move on,” Mr Ofori-Atta said.

By Laud Nartey|3news.com|Ghana

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