The CEO of the Ghana Chamber of Telecommunications, Ken Ashigbey, has said that there has been an enormous withdrawal of money from various mobile money wallets since the approval of the Electronic Transaction Levy (E-Levy).
Speaking to Asaase News’ Gemma Appiah, Ashigbey added that the tax is not in the interest of the ordinary Ghanaian but the government is determined to push it through.
“Massively, people are withdrawing from the momo and it makes the whole thing complicated. I actually don’t know why the government wouldn’t at least want to listen to the people. Because this is not NDC, NPP; this is a cross-section by the whole population, which is not willing to pay this type of tax which is multiplicative and it is not in the interest of the common man,” Ashigbey said.
On Tuesday (29 March), Parliament passed the Electronic Transaction Levy (E-Levy) by a vote of MPs from the Majority Caucus of the House after the Minority staged a walkout.
The Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu, said his side still opposes the E-Levy, hence the walkout.
Iddrisu urged President Akufo-Addo to withdraw the E-Levy Bill from the House because, he said, the Minority will not have anything to do with the controversial tariff.
Earlier, Ken Ofori-Atta, the Minister for Finance, had said the government has decided to reduce the basic E-Levy charge from 1.75% of the value of the transaction to 1.5%.
He said the government had reached this decision following engagements with various stakeholders undertaken by the government.
The “poor” are not part of E-Levy.
The Information Minister, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah has said that the “poor” have been exempted from the Electronic Transaction Levy due to the threshold of less than GHC100.
Also, he debunked claims that the Levy will kill the Mobile Money [Momo] industry.
According to him, although the same comments were made during the introduction of the Communications Service Tax, the telecom industry has thrived ever since.
Speaking on the floor of Parliament on Tuesday (29 March), the Ofoase Ayirebi Member of Parliament said, “There is a claim that has been made that it will kill the MoMo industry so don’t tax MoMo.
“This same claim was made when the Communications Service Tax was being introduced, it has never killed the industry. In fact, the industry has grown.”
He added: “Mr Speaker, finally, the poor have been taken out of it with the threshold implemented so that those who transfer less than GHC 100 a day will not pay this levy.”