-Buaben Asamoah makes U-turn
Story: Peace AWUKU
Communications Director of the governing New Patriotic Party, (NPP), Yaw Buaben Asamoah has clarified that at no point did former President John Dramani Mahama say he would repeal the Communication Service Tax, CST.
Mr. Buaben Asamoah stated that it was rather a position of the then opposition National Democratic Congress, (NDC), even though he could not readily provide the name of the official who made the said pronouncement.
Contributing to a discussion on the Accra-based Joy News channel, which was monitored by Today the former Adentan Member of Parliament (MP) insisted that there were records that showed open opposition of the NDC to the tax handle. “I am not on this zoom call to tell you exactly when and where, the records are there, you can find them. You can even fact check
“It is not John Mahama who said that he will repeal Communication Service Tax. If you want, I will find you the exact personality who said it…. I will find it for you.
“But it is a fact that they (the NDC) opposed the CST heavily, that they didn’t want it to happen and it is a fact that they stayed absent against it, saying if the NPP was allowed to tax talk, they will tax air.”
Pushed further relative to the specific case of John Mahama as he had asserted in an earlier press conference, he restated: “I didn’t say John Dramani Mahama, I said NDC. I will find it for you…that is what I said, I didn’t say John Mahama said…”
The issue of tax repeal has come up with a promise by Mahama earlier this week to repeal the Electronic Transfer Levy (E-Levy) introduced by the government.
At a public lecture in Accra, the former president said the next NDC government will repeal the levy because it was imposing undue hardship on the ordinary Ghanaian.
Also reacting to Mr Mahama’s promise to repeal the E-Levy Act, leading member of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) Gabby Otchere Darko, recalled that in 2007/2008 Mr Mahama and NDC vehemently opposed the introduction of ”talk tax” and campaigned to repeal it if elected.
After wining the 2008 elections, he said, they failed to honour that promise.
“In 2007/2008 John Mahama & NDC vehemently opposed the introduction of ”talk tax” & campaigned to repeal it if elected! They won in ‘08 but kept quiet. When Mahama became President in 2013, he quickly introduced the Communication Service Tax Amendment Act to widen the talk tax net,” he tweeted.
Mr Mahama while delivering an address titled “Ghana at Crossroad” on Monday May 2 , 2022 assured persons who were unhappy with the e-levy that the NDC will repeal it.
E-Levy was the major tax handle in the 2022 budget. Despite a chaotic and protracted process leading to its passage, implementation started on May 1 even as three Minority MPs challenged the processes leading to its passage.