Former Flagbearer aspirant of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Captain (Rtd) Nkrabea Effah Dartey, has asked Ghanaians to disregard claims by former President, John Dramani Mahama that he will repeal the Electronic Transactions Act (E-Levy) when he gets the opportunity to lead the country once again.
According to him, the former President lacks the moral right to label the E-Levy as an ‘uncalled for’ levy since Mr. Mahama as a former Ghanaian leader knows the significance of taxes in the development of a nation.
The E-Levy tax came into force on 1st May 2022 after President Nana Addo Dankwa Akuffo-Addo assented to the Electronic Transactions Act which was passed by Parliament on March 29, 2022.
Minority members of Parliament led by Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrissu staged a walk-out during the third and final reading of the Bill allowing the Majority to unanimously approve the Bill.
An attempt by three NDC MPs – Haruna Iddrissu, Samuel Okedzeto Ablakwa, and Mahama Ayariga – to get the Supreme Court to place an injunction on its implementation hit a snag when the highest court threw out their attempt to injunct the implementation of the e-levy.
The Minority MPs contended that the legal threshold for passage of such a bill was not met before it was passed.
Mr. Mahama prior to the Supreme Court ruling had assured Ghanaians at his ‘Ghana at Crossroads’ address that if voted into power in 2025, a new NDC government will repeal the E-Levy Act.
According to him, the E-levy is only a distortionary and burdensome tax that only forces Ghanaians to pay more while suffering.
Mr. Mahama said, “unfortunately in the face of this self-inflicted economic catastrophe, this government against all sound advise has decided to introduce the E-Levy that heaps more suffering on Ghanaians.”
“A new National Democratic Congress government, God willing, with the votes of the sovereign people of Ghana, in 2025 will repeal the E-Levy act,” he added.
But Nkrabea Effah Dartey called on Ghanaians not to take him seriously arguing that the NDC and Mr. Mahama lack the moral right to call for the repeal of the tax.
“Honestly, I think the e-levy is good. John Mahama has been saying he will repeal it. He is lying, he can’t [cancel it] upon realizing the amount of money been realized from it,” he opined.
He further charged Ghanaians to wholeheartedly embrace the e-levy as it will embolden the citizenry to question the politician on the use of their taxes.
“Every nation’s development is dependent on the amount of money the government has for projects. All governments since Nkrumah’s era have been borrowing a lot for development and this wouldn’t have been so if we were paying enough taxes. In America, Vice President Agnew was jailed for failing to pay taxes.
“Why is it that in Ghana we don’t intensify our tax collection system and raise enough money to develop the country. That has informed why we as NPP upon realizing that a lot of mobile money transactions are done have decided to bring the e-levy to raise the money for development. In just a year, the momo transfer was over GHC 9 Billion.
“Paying taxes will allow us to hold governments accountable for what they do with our resources,” he said.