If you don’t want gov’t to tax you; don’t demand projects from gov’t- Avedzi tells Ghanaians

The Chairman of the Finance Committee of Parliament has criticized Ghanaians for protesting the new wave of taxes, especially the one percent tax on investment.

James Avedzi told Joy News’ Francis Abban “If we don’t want government to collect these taxes to do development then let’s not demand development projects from government.”

Government late last year introduced a controversial one per cent tax on all profits on investment. The policy received widespread criticisms which forced government to make a u-turn.

The government has since written to Parliament for a review of the act which should withdraw the controversial 1 percent tax on investment.

Despite the imminent withdrawal, there are new taxes introduced by the government to rake in more revenue for government.

There is the 20 per cent on fees, allowances paid to board members, trustees and resident directors or managers.

A special ten per cent is being charged on fees paid to lecturers, examiners, invigilators, part time teachers and endorsement fees.

Sales persons, insurance agents, lotto agents, will have commissions taxed by ten per cent taxed as well.

All these, coupled with the increases in prices of utilities and fuel have only increased the cost of living in the country, with a good number of Ghanaians complaining.

But James Avedzi said Ghanaians cannot continue to berate government for borrowing too much and yet when government decides to stop the borrowing and raise revenue through taxation the same Ghanaians will go a criticism spree.

“Government is looking for more avenues to raise more revenue to meet government expenditure.

“We are aware that total revenue that government generates, most of the time is not adequate to meet all the expenditure for government.

“And that is why government most of the time go to move look for loans. And we complain all the time that why is government borrowing to meet expenditure.

He said people have suggested to government to look at other domestic ways of raising revenue and he believes taxes is the ingenious way of raising more revenue.

“The committee considered one of the areas to raise revenue is to expand the tax net and raise more revenue.

Even though the tax on investment is about to be withdrawn from Parliament, Mr Avedzi said the tax is important and it is legal.

“The interest government is paying to you is an income to me (government) and our income tax law says that any income that is earned in this country, received or brought into this country is subject to tax.

“So whether it is government or private person borrowing your money and paying interest, that interest to you is an income to me and by application of the law it is subject to tax.”

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