Parliament will resume today, Tuesday, amid ongoing uncertainty about the controversial e-levy. The government has decided to submit a revised levy rate of 1.75 percent to 1.5 percent.
Given the Speaker’s rumored absence from the jurisdiction, it’s unclear whether the matter will be taken, given recent tensions on the House floor caused by the Speaker’s absence.
James Klutse Avedzi, the Deputy Minority Leader, is encouraging the majority caucus to table the E-levy bill after the speaker returns. According to him, doing so will help prevent the chaos and uncertainty that erupted in the House before the holidays.
He said; “If the Speaker traveled this weekend, then he will not be available. Our advise to the majority side is that we should wait until the speaker comes back. When the speaker presides then we will vote on the matter. Once that is done, the end decision will be a decision of the house.”
The majority caucus was claimed to have undertaken separate debates on the E-levy bill last Friday, delaying Parliament’s sitting for over seven hours.
The controversial electronic transaction levy was supposed to be brought before the house that night, according to Majority Leader Osei Kyei Mensah-Bonsu, but this did not happen.
The Minority leadership opposed the government’s new proposal to cut the levy rate from 1.75 percent to 1.5 percent.
The decision to factor in a Telco concession to cut their 1% charge by 0.25 percent inspired the rate reduction.
In the absence of the speaker, Alban Bagbin, it is uncertain whether the bill will be presented to the House for deliberation.