Hon Daniel Ashiamah, Member of communication Committee of Parliament, has criticised a tax increase on Communication describing it as an incompetent policy that would worsen the plight of the rural farmers.
While the government is happy to remove the luxury tax on the ashy cars, the Beam National Democratic Congress (NDC) legislator said, the tax introductions cast the net of hardship on the rural poor.
Hon. Ashiamah was reacting to the government’s mid-year budget review in which the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, announced the increment of Petroleum levy and communication services tax, but the scrapping of the controversial tax on luxury vehicles after 12months.
The Finance Minister announced a 90p increase per gallon of petrol and diesel. The increase is in the Energy Sector Levies (ESLA) which will see a 20p levy per litre for petrol and diesel while LPG gets an 8p levy per kg.
According to the Minister, the tax is needed to fund serious challenges within the energy sector occasioned by “obnoxious” decisions by the previous government which saw them sign power purchase agreements in excess of the country’s needs.
But Mr Ashiamah said the withdrawal of the luxury tax is a vindication of the Minority, while the increment of the taxes on petroleum and communication is overall a boon to shareholders of companies and bad for everyone else.
The Buem lawmaker added the reckless taxation would increase poverty and inequality of the rural farmer who already faced with transportation challenges to cart their produce and money to buy credit for calls.
He said the Minority is interested in the insincerity to the Ghanaian taxpayer, stressing that putting a tax on an inelastic good like petrol, will affect motorbike riders and public transport users.
He called the shifting of a tax burden from the affluent to the poor as an attempt to overburden the already impoverished the rural folks.
Source: therepublicnewsonline.com/Felix Nyaaba