The General Secretary of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), Johnson Asiedu Nketia has advised government to cut down public expenditure instead of increasing the tax burden of the average Ghanaian.
Speaking at an NDC Forum on the 2022 budget, the outspoken politician noted that government can reduce expenditure by eliminating some privileges enjoyed by the Executive.
He observed that these “frivolous” perks are causing Ghana’s expenditure to increase, therefore, must be removed.
“We are talking about the shortage of revenue as against expenditure and we want to bridge the gap. Nobody is talking about cutting down expenditure.
“You want to continue taxing people, including those who are dying. But you are not prepared to cut down on your privileges,” he said on Wednesday.
Mr. Nketia promised that with 137 representatives in Parliament, the NDC will participate in deliberations at the committee levels to ensure that the Akufo-Addo government considers the plight of the people.
“So it is at this committee level that we will deal with the privileges and determine which expenditure is of priority in these times of crisis and which is not.
“And Parliament has the power to cut down those frivolous expenditures,” he stressed.
The incumbent Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta while delivering the 2022 budget on Wednesday, November 17, proposed a 1.75% levy on all electronic transactions effective January 1, 2022.
He described it as an innovative method to generate revenue after government scraped road tolls.
However, a section of Ghanaians including the Minority in Parliament and some economists have kicked against this proposal arguing that it will intensify the hardships of the average Ghanaian.
Concurring to these arguments, Mr Nketia said the National Democratic Congress will ensure that e-levy is not passed.
He insisted that the NDC caucus will deploy “all its powers” to prevent the implementation of the proposal.