The Minority in Parliament has asked the Majority to provide “clarity and certainty” on the presentation of the Electronic Transactions Bill (E-Levy).
The demand followed the omission of the controversial bill, on the Order Paper schedule of the House for yesterday.
Raising the concern about the delay in the presentation of the bill, in the House, the Minority Leader and NDC MP for Tamale South, Haruna Iddrisu, asked the Majority Leader and NPP MP for Suame, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, to provide clarity and certainty on the status of the bill.
“On this very important matter of national interest, there can be no surprises. So we want the leader of government business (the Majority Leader) to lead us through.
“When will the bill be brought to Parliament? Will it be re-introduced as a new bill or we are taking it under certificate of urgency? Members must know,” Mr Iddrisu said.
According to the Minority Leader, NDC remained resolute in its opposition to the bill which seeks to impose 1.75 per cent tax on selected electronic transactions.
“As we have publicly said, we want to stand with the Ghanaian people in our opposition and rejection of the bill. We don’t want any surprises so let the leader of government business indicate to us when the bill will come to Parliament and in what form should we anticipate or expect it.
However, Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu said his side of the House did not intend to spring surprise on the House with the bill.
He explained that a pre-sitting meeting with the Minority Leader, indicated that both sides would have to determine when the bill would be laid and that though it was provisionally programmed for today (Wednesday), it could not be taken.
“So it is not as if anybody wants to spring any surprise on anybody. It would have to be decided on and I would signal him [the Minority Leader] so that we agree on a common date,” the Majority leader said.
He said the majority had the backing of Ghanaian to pass the bill, adding “We on this side want to stand with the republic to ensure the revitalisation of the economy,”
Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu said “If people want to see the collapse of the economy, so be it for them but we want to stand with the republic”.
Since its announcement in the 2022 budget statement and economic policy of government presented to Parliament, the Minority has kicked against the proposed E- levy; arguing it would compound the hardship of the Ghanaian and push people to go back to cash-heavy economy at a time the government was championing a cash-light economy.
Expected to rake in GH¢6.9 billion in revenue annually, the government, backed by the Majority said the levy remained a key resource mobilisation avenue for job creation and road infrastructural development.