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GRA is not ready to kick-start E-levy – Sam George

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Ningo-Prampram MP, Sam George

The Member of Parliament for Ningo Prampram, Sam George, says the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), is not fully prepared to begin the implementation of the Electronic Transfer Levy from Sunday, May 1, 2022.

The Deputy Ranking Member on Parliament’s Communications Committee said the GRA is yet to meet the necessary requirements for the implementation of the controversial tax.

“My position has been from a technical point, where I say that the GRA is not ready to roll out the E-levy. Normally when you are deploying a project like this, there are three phases; the system development phase, the stage deployment phase and the product deployment. How do you go ahead and run a financial operation where all of these critical analysis have not been done?” the MP asked.

Mr. George said it is even more worrying that the GRA has not engaged in extensive consultations with key stakeholders on the implementation.

“The GRA is not listening to technical advice. People are raising very important issues and the GRA is not listening.”

He was concerned that tithes and offerings could be affected by the E-levy.

“If you are paying to our churches on Sundays or if you are paying your Zakat, that transaction to the short code is going to be charged 1.5 percent in contravention of laws. Such offertories and tithes are all tax exempt. The GRA is seeking to steal from us and God as well.”

Some members of the Minority Caucus are already challenging the passage of the e-levy in the Supreme Court.

They subsequently filed an injunction on the implementation pending the final determination of the case. The case is expected to be heard on May 4th, 2022.

However, the GRA has served notice that the tax measure is coming into full force in May, a position the conveners of the #Fixthecountry movement who staged a protest against the E-levy even before its passage, find problematic.

They have vowed to use available legal means to stop the GRA.

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