The Member of Parliament for Banda, Ahmed Ibrahim has expressed surprise at the government’s decision to push through with the implementation of the e-levy after failing to engage stakeholders on the bill.

According to him, government instead of seeking and finding ways to address the concern of stakeholders involved in passing the bill rather went to celebrate Christmas.

“I’m very worried that for the whole recess, government who was confronted with a lot of challenges for its inability to push through e-levy went to celebrate the Christmas instead of choosing to meet the stakeholders who mattered in executing this kind of business, and I’m very surprised,” he said on JoyNews’ PM Express.

The Deputy Minority Whip stated that neither the ruling government nor any of its Party members made any attempt whatsoever to reach out to members from the opposition side to deliberate on the best way forward during the recess.

He added that as far as he knows, the e-levy will not be reintroduced before Parliament this week.

“So it will interest you to know that government or nobody in the NPP MPs or nobody in the NPP Ministers, or nobody in the executive including even the President of the Republic and his Chief of Staff have met or engaged anybody in the Minority, not even the Minority Leader or the Party or the MPs within this recess.

“So today I was not surprised that we went for business committee meeting, to my belief government could not table the e-levy as part of the business to be executed in this week. So the e-levy is not on the business statement for this week,” he said.

“Government says it is now going to consult. So government is now telling us today that he’s now going to consult the Minority, Civil Society Organisations, the political parties and all those people who matter in the passage of the bill.

“But my question is why did government choose not do this in the recess? So the uncertainty in the economic landscape will linger on for some time,” he added.

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DISCLAIMER: The Views, Comments, Opinions, Contributions and Statements made by Readers and Contributors on this platform do not necessarily represent the views or policy of Multimedia Group Limited.