I prefer e-levy to gov’t going to IMF – Mahama
Dr. Edward Mahama, a former Presidential Candidate of the People’s National Convention (PNC) has commended the implementation of the E levy.
According to him, he prefers raising revenue via E levy to going to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for assistance. Dr. Mahama was made Ambassador-at-large during the first term of President Akuffo Addo’s administration. He made mention of this during an interview on 3fm on May 12, 2022.
When asked about his view on the implementation of the E levy, the Former Presidential candidate stated ” If we solve our problems, I am for that than to go to IMF.”
E-Levy: If we solve our problems, I am for that than to go to IMF.
Dr. Edward Mahama #FirstTake
— Urban Lifestyle Radio📻 (@3fm927) May 12, 2022
He continued by saying, he has hope in Ghana and if Ghana does well, everyone will be good.
Not long ago, the Finance Minister, Mr. Ofori Atta, stated emphatically that Ghana will not go to IMF for financial assistance.
According to him, even the IMF knows Ghana has taken the right decision. He is of the view that the internal measures and policies introduced will deal with basic issues affecting the economy.
He went on to explain measures put in place by the government. Mr. Ofori Atta indicated that among the measures taken are salary cuts.
All these were made known by the Finance Minister during a press conference today. A foreign journalist asked him whether Ghana would consider going back to the IMF.
Mr. Ofori Atta whiles answering the question said ” All the white folks are just interested in us coming into the IMF program. I always wonder why.”
MORE ON E LEVY IMPLEMENTATION
He continued “We are members of the fund; there are two major points of interventions that we have from the fund. One is the advice that we get because of the phenomenal expertise that the fund has and then secondly, these program interventions that bring us some resources.
Moreover, he stated that the 2022 budget will help Ghana bounce back. “I think if you see from the budget that we constructed for 2022 and the subsequent announcement that we have done, clearly, the issue of Ghana having the capacity to think through the consolidation exercise exists. Also discipline itself with regards to the 20 percent, etc, that we have shown clearly.” Mr. Ofori Atta mentioned.
The Finance Minister furthered this by saying “We have committed to not going back to the fund because, in terms of the interventions and policy we are right there, the fund knows that we are completely in the right direction. The issue is, validating the programs that we have put in place and then, in my view, supporting us to find alternative ways of financing or re-financing our debt, reprofiling it.”
He has ruled out going back to the IMF on several occasions. Mr. Ofori Atta insists that Ghana would not return to the IMF for support. This is in order to deal with the challenges that the local economy is going through at the moment.
On Thursday, February 10, 2022, Mr. Ofori Atta during a town hall meeting on the E levy clearly stated that going back to the World Bank or IMF has serious consequences.
Also, the finance minister hinted that Ghana has the ability to raise revenue domestically for development.
CONTINUATION OF E LEVY IMPLEMENTATION
However, some government officials are calling on the government to go back to the IMF. One of them is the former MP for New Juabeng South. He is of the view that a return would save Ghana’s struggling economy.
Dr. Mark Assibey-Yeboah said, “Without a doubt, I think we should be placing a call to Washington if we haven’t really done that. We are just not going to ask for the funds just because E-levy has been passed or not. E-levy will just bring about GH¢5 billion. We are in a deep hole in our tax revenue and facing difficulties, so going to the Fund will give us some support.
Also, during an interview with Citi, he said “So there is nothing wrong with going to the Fund. Ghana is a member of the IMF so what is wrong going to ask for support when we are in difficulties to go and pooling resources. If I was the finance minister, I will be convincing the President that it is about time we went back,”
Also, the General Secretary of the National Democratic Congress has made a similar call to the government. Mr. Johnson Asiedu Nketia when asked about E levy implementation stated that the President should go back to the IMF. He said this speaking on TV3’s New Day show. He said, “I think it is something that they have to consider. if it is the only that will take us out of this problem then the earlier the better.”
CONCLUSION ON E LEVY IMPLEMENTATION
But, the Finance Minister has stated categorically on several occasions that Ghana will not go back onto the IMF program. Mr. Ofori Atta stated “I can tell you, as my colleague deputy said, we are not going back to the IMF, whatever we do we are not [going back]. The consequences are dire, we are a proud nation, we have the resources, we have that capacity, don’t let anybody tell you … we are not people of short-sighted, we need to move on,”
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