Senior political science lecturer at the University of Ghana Professor Ransford Gyampo has questioned the ‘flip-flop’ position of some minority members of parliament (MPs) on some matters that have engaged parliament’s attention particularly the controversial electronic transaction levy otherwise known as e-levy.
In a social media post, Professor Gyampo wondered if some of the minority MPs received the double salary and it was being used to threaten them to act in a certain manner in the discharge of their parliamentary duties.
He stated that the role minority MPs was gradually becoming one of a “public gimmick”.
“I can’t understand the minority group in Parliament. Is it the case that some actually took double salaries and are being blackmailed? Gradually their role is becoming a facade & public gimmick. Let’s see how they pass the 1.75% E-Levy” he wrote on his Facebook timeline.
In 2018, an audit report revealed that some ministers and MPs under the John Dramani Mahama-led administration received a ‘double salary’.
Some MPs cited in the report were Ellembelle MP, Emmanuel Armah-Kofi Buah; former Kpone Katamanso MP, Nii Laryea Afotey Agbo; former Tamale Central MP, Inusah Fuseini; Ada MP, Comfort Doyoe Cudjoe-Ghansah’ and former Brong Ahafo Regional Minister, Eric Opoku.
They were made to appear before the police for prosecution.
The police said the alleged action by the MPs “is contrary to Section 124 (1) of the Criminal and other Offences Act 1960 (Act 29), as amended in 2012, Act 849. Section 124 relates to the offence of stealing”.
Former Special Prosecutor, Martin Amidu, also in May 2021 alleged that the president, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, used the ‘double salary’ saga and other criminal matters to get the minority MPs on Parliaments Appointment Committee to approve his ministerial nominees.
This was after Attorney-General Godfred Yeboah Dame had accused him [Martin Amidu] of failing to prosecute the matter even though it was brought to him.
Haruna Iddrisu ‘flip-flop’ position on e-levy
The minority leader, Haruna Iddrisu, has recently come under fire for going back on his side’s resolve to oppose the 1.75% e-levy.
At the 10th anniversary launch of the Ghana Chamber of Telecommunications, the Tamale South indicated that he will accept a 1% e-levy contrary to earlier public
“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 per cent e-levy,” he said.
But at a subsequent parliamentary sitting, the minority leader mounted a spirited argument against the e-levy.