Minority Members of Parliament and top officials of the National Democratic Congress, NDC, have rallied behind Tamale South MP and Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu after his latest comment on the controversial Electronic transaction levy (E-levy).
The levy has become a major point of disagreement between the Minority and Majority Group in the lawmaking chamber.
According to Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, despite extensive deliberations with the Minority, there had been no breakthrough on the specific issue even though on four other concerns, the government had agreed to amend the budget to cater for their concerns as well as that of other stakeholders.
Addressing the issue on Tuesday, December 7, 2021, when the House reconvened, Haruna Iddrisu said: “We on this side of the house are unable to support the government in his request to impose an E-Levy- on MoMo and Banks transactions.
“Therefore the minority stand opposed at any time e-levy is introduced because it will bring hardship on the Ghanaian people.”
The above view is a total departure from a personal view he advanced late last week whiles speaking at the 10th Anniversary launch of the Ghana Chamber of Telecommunications in Accra when Haruna said the Minority Caucus in Parliament will readily accept a reduction of the proposed e-levy to 1% from the original 1.75%.
“A week ago, it was “no, no, no,” we won’t accept e-levy but having listened to officials in government, including the Minister of Finance. I am convinced to accept a departure from my original no to accepting a one percent e-levy.
He noted that when the e-levy is pegged at one percent, it will be a great contribution to fiscal consolidation and would ensure the economy did not collapse going forward.
“We are not against it but we want it fixed at one percent. We fear for double taxation because we already have the communication services tax,” he said.
The comment led to harsh criticism within and outside the party as people accused Haruna Iddrisu of capitulating. His Chief Whip issued a statement later to stress that the 0% stance of the party remained unchanged.