Vice Presidential Candidate of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia has pointed out that the NPP will immediately review the various taxes that have been introduced by the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC), specifically review the Income Tax Act 2015 to abolish the taxes on pensions and allowances as soon as it takes office.
The former Central Bank Deputy Governor noted that the NPP under Nana Akufo-Addo has a significantly different vision which does not focus on taxation but on productivity, jobs and the welfare of the Ghanaian people.
Dr. Bawumia made these comments to students and lecturers of the E.P. College of Education in Amedzofe in the Volta Region on Wednesday, June 1.
“An NPP government will build the most business friendly and most people friendly economy in Africa,” he said.
“This means that job creation will be at the heart of economic policy. A lot of the other taxes we are seeing today will be scrapped. We will reduce the tax burden on our people and businesses so that they can employ more people and introduce a Tax Credit scheme for Companies that employ fresh graduates so that we will increase the employment of fresh graduates.”
Dr. Bawumia explained that pensioners are one of the most vulnerable persons in society and that in the view of the NPP gains made on investments in pensions are part of pensions and should be protected.
This he said will not only make pensioners more comfortable but will also ensure that individuals have a bigger capacity to invest in businesses or simply increase savings and therefore, access to credit.
Dr Bawumia once again stated that for the NPP, the ideal way to increasing tax revenue is by formalizing the economy through the issuance of national IDs and a properly functioning property address system, which will expand the tax net and by growing the economy through a focus on jobs and productivity.
‘Taxes on the air we breathe’
Dr. Bawumia was worried that if the John Mahama government finds a way, it will even impose taxes on the air Ghanaians breathe.
“The government imposed taxes on condoms, cutlasses, savings; today they are imposing taxes on pensions and allowances. Anything they think they can impose taxes on, they are imposing taxes on it – even if they think they could impose taxes on the air we breathe today, they would have imposed taxes on it.”
While dissecting the causes of the economic and social crisis Ghana finds itself in today, Dr. Bawumia pointed out that the current slump in the economy had been occasioned by the government’s mismanagement, corruption and incompetence and that in its desperate bid to find a way out, the government had resorted to imprudently imposing taxes on every conceivable item.
He said the government as a result of the penchant for taxes is losing sight of the hurt that is causing the economy.
“In so doing, they do not even understand that this is actually hurting the economy but they are so desperate for revenue that they are not even thinking about the economy.”