The spokesperson for the Vice President has rejected suggestions that Dr Mahamadu Bawumia has made a U-turn in his position on the controversial Electronic Transaction Levy (E-Levy).

According to him, “every single decision that government makes, every actor in government is bound by that, and the Vice President is a key figure.”

In 2020, Dr Bawumia told Accra-based Peace FM that mobile money should not be taxed as most users are poor.

But government, through Parliament, has approved the E-Levy as part of its revenue generation measures to shore up the economy.

Due to his long silence on the matter, many Ghanaians called on the Vice President to make his stance on the Levy public, following his earlier opposition to the taxation of mobile money transactions.

In his speech on the state of the economy on Thursday, Dr Bawumia mentioned the E-levy once in his two-hour speech, something many suggested to be his dislike for the tax measure.

But his Spokesperson, Dr Gideon Boako, has refuted such claims and explained that “it’s a government decision that is being supported and approved by Parliament, of which the Vice President is part.”

“At the end of the day, government through Parliament and the generality of Ghanaians have brought the E-Levy; it is part of our tax measures that we have. So we’ve crossed that bridge of whether it is good or not good.

“What is important now is what the citizenry are looking up to – government if committed to doing this, we’re going to support you, we would pay and once pay, you must put the proceeds from the E-Levy to judicious use,” he said.

Speaking on PM Express on Thursday, Dr Boako added, “You look at the situation we find ourselves in, and you see where the balance of risk tilts towards.

“I think the balance of risk tilts towards the fact that government should be able to cut down on borrowing, raise more revenue and make sure that we can take care of a lot of the things that we do such that we don’t impose additional burdens on us by way of going to the market or going elsewhere to borrow.”

Meanwhile, an economist at the University of Ghana Business School (UGBS), Dr Patrick Asuming, says the Vice President’s continuous silence on the Electronic Transaction levy (E-levy) suggests he is against the imposition of the tax.

According to Dr Asuming, he was among the many Ghanaians hoping to hear Dr Mahamudu Bawumia’s take on the levy since he opposed the taxation of electronic transactions some years ago.

Speaking on JoyNews’ AM Show on Friday, he said: “Yesterday, one of the things I was hoping he will comment on was the E-levy. I think his silence on that matter is quite revealing in itself. I guess he isn’t supportive of it.

“When he talked in the past about not taxing MoMo, he made the point that most economists have been making about the E-levy and the fact that this isn’t a good tax to impose.”

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