The controversial Electronic Transactions Levy(E-levy) will be considered by Parliament today under a certificate of emergency.
According to our sources in Parliament, though all the 12 National Democratic Congress(NDC) MPs on the Finance Committee of Parliament voted against the effort by the Majority Group to get Parliament to consider the Killer E-Levy under a certificate of emergency, the Chairman of the committee, Hon. Kweku Kwateng, exercised his casting vote to tilt the outcome in thier favour.
“All the 12 NDC MPs voted “No” against the Bill. All the 12 NPP MPs voted “Yes” for the E-levy Bill. Pursuant to Order 211(5), the Chairman, Kwaku Kwarteng exercised his casting vote to tilt it in the favour of the NPP MPs on the Finance Committe of Parliament,” our source stated.
Accordingly, the House will resume sitting today to consider the approval or otherwise of the electronic transaction levy (E-levy) Bill.
Speaking after the Majority decision by the Finance Committee to present E-Levy Bill before House, Ranking Member on the Committee, Dr. Cassiel Ato Forson stated that “We also said there was the need to invite the E-Commerce Association of Ghana for the purposes of them filling us in, as to what they believe will be the negative impact of this Bill if it goes through.
According to him, they “saw last night that the Mobile Money Agents Association of Ghana had issued a public notice that they’re going to embark on a demonstration. We felt there was a need, at the minimum, to meet with them and listen to them.”
Dr. Cassiel Ato Forson added that “because we in the Minority believe that our power is with the people, and we’re here representing the people and for any reason anytime you’re going through legislation, there is the need for you to invite public memoranda and most important, a particular Bill of this nature, that everyone is complaining about, there’s the need for us to listen to people.”
Meanwhile, the Leader of the Majority Group and MP for Suame, Hon. Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, is optimistic that Parliament will approve the controversial E-levy regardless of the opposition it has generated.
According to him, ‘the major revenue source, the E-levy, is going to be considered by Parliament. I want to believe that Parliament, after the unanimous passage of the Appropriation Bill, will rise to the occasion to pass the major revenue source to feed the work program of the government for 2022. I am hugely aware that every Member of Parliament needs roads, educational facilities in his or her constituency.
“The E-levy will be a major booster for these endeavours. That is why I believe that Members of Parliament will not vote against the E-levy to deny their constituents the benefit of basic infrastructural facilities,” he stated.
However, Dr. Clement Abas Apaak, MP for Builsa South, has reiterated the firm resolve of all the 137 NDC MPs to vote against the e-levy.