By Nana Kofi Hammah
Some Ghanaian celebrities have waded into the ongoing debate on the introduction of the electronic Levy(e-levy) as proposed by the ruling government in the 2022 Budget. The announcement of this electronic tax has thrown Ghanaians into disarray on the impact it will bring onto them if the Bill is passed. The E-levy as an internal revenue measure proposed by the government, is a tax that is seeking to impose a 1.75%, which is subject to change to 1.5%, as the Bill is reintroduced to Parliament on mobile money payments, bank transfers and other electronic transactions except inward remittance which will be borne by the recipient.
Ghanaian Musician, Gyedu-Blay Ambolley, asserts that the timing for the E-Levy is not quite appropriate. ”Taxing Ghanaians at a time when the unemployment rate is high is totally wrong”.
“I think that the E-levy is being forced on the citizens of Ghana. There’s no way that they’ll come and tell us that it will bring a profit of GHC 6 billion and over. Before you people took loans over billions and told us that you were going to build roads and nothing happened. We are not kids”.” People need to pay if they are flexible and working. There are no jobs, nothing to show for and the little money in my pocket too. Do you want to take it? People are hungry and hungry men are angry! Trash it! he stated in an interview with Joy Prime.
Actress Lydia Forson has a series of posts out there on the E-Levy. According to the actress in a series of posts shared on her twitter page, the country is set to be going back to the cash economy should the government go ahead to implement the proposed levy.
“I went to the pharmacy yesterday. When it was time to pay, I took out my phone to send the money. I found myself pausing to ask if the E-levy had started? They said no. Yet, I still opted to pay in cash. Y`all don’t get how survival kicks in when your back is against the wall”. she stated.
There is ABSOLUTELY nothing good about E- Levy!!! NOTHING.
There would be room to debate it’s necessity if we’re weren’t already being taxed for nearly everything already.
The argument should start from all these hidden/dodgy taxes we pay and are yet to see their benefits.
— miss forson (@lydiaforson) February 10, 2022
The Rap King Sarkodie thinks Ghanaians are appalled by the E-Levy because it is entirely negative, in a quest to respond to a fan on his thoughts about the E-Levy on social media.
According to the Rapper, many are not in favor of the E-Levy since residents do not get to experience the benefits that come, often with paying taxes unlike overseas, where administered.
“I Pay a lot of taxes outside and I don’t complain because I’m using avenues, they are made available to make money (it’s only right), it’s not the same here and that’s why we complain not because the E-Levy is bad. when you broke, a harmless good morning can sound like a tease”. he tweeted.
I pay a lot of taxes outside and I don’t complain because I’m using avenues they made available to make 💰( it’s only right ) it’s not same here and that’s why we complain not because the “E Levy” is bad . When you broke, a harmless “good morning “ can sound like a tease https://t.co/7s25NqnbJN
— Sarkodie (@sarkodie) February 8, 2022
The Dancehall Artiste has urged the government to reconsider its decision on implementing the proposed E-Levy. He stated his displeasure in a Facebook live video. According to him, the country’s leaders are being insensitive to the plight of Ghanaians with the introduction of the Bill regardless of the cry to halt the implementation.
The “Mahama paper” hit maker said “right now you people make the thing look like, if you get the opportunity and get your chance, to come to power, you can take any decision you want”. Without and resort to human beings”, Shatta Wale added.
The government, as a way of broader consultation to get the buy-in of Ghanaians, has organized Town Hall Meetings to explain the benefits of E-Levy.
Read More: E-Levy