Politics

2022 budget: Parliament passes Appropriations Bill without E-Levy

Parliament has passed the appropriation bill amidst disagreements.

The vexed matter of the E-Levy which the finance committee failed to consider over disagreements compelled the House to adjourn sitting to next week Monday.

This is contrary to plans for the House to rise for the Christmas break after sitting. The Majority side led by its leader Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu wanted both the appropriation bill and the E-Levy bill to be considered by the finance minister before sitting ended.

The Minority side led by its leader Haruna Iddrisu however rejected such a move arguing his side could only partake in the passage of the appropriation bill.

The Tamale South MP demanded the E-Levy be deferred. The matter was then left to the finance committee to decide. Disagreements at the committee eventually led to the shelving of the E-Levy bill with the house passing only the appropriation bill to enable the president to spend from the consolidated fund after expiration of the 2021 appropriation Act which expires December 31.

Meanwhile, telecommunications firms in the country have agreed to a 25% downward cut in their mobile money transactions in order to accommodate the controversial E-Levy.

“We have had extensive deliberation with government on the need to lessen the impact on our consumers. We acknowledge the need to expand the tax base. However, to reduce the overall impact of the new levy on consumers, MTN and AirtelTigo have agreed to downward revision of their P2P (person to person transfer) fees by up to 25% depending on respective operator. Vodafone currently has no charges,” the Ghana Chamber of Telecommunications (GTC) said in a statement Friday evening.

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