Some members of the Ghanaian House of Representatives on Monday engaged in a physical fight during voting on the electronic transaction levy bill.
Naija News learned the fight started after the Speaker of the House, Joe Osei-Owusu, stood up to cast his vote in favour of the bill.
It was learned that this decision angered the minority in the house, who confronted the speaker.
The parliamentarians reportedly tried to prevent the speaker from casting his vote, arguing that based on the house’s standing order, he was supposed to be neutral.
In a viral video, while the house was taking a vote to decide if the e-levy bill should be treated under certificate of urgency, the aggrieved lawmakers climbed the podium and were seen trying to prevent the speaker from going to cast his vote.
The parliamentarians were seen exchanging blows while some officials tried to protect the speaker’s seat and the mace from being taken.
Introduction of the Electronic Tax Bill
In November, the Ghanaian government had said it was introducing an electronic transaction levy (e-levy) in the 2022 budget. The government had said the e-levy was introduced as part of measures to widen the country’s tax net.
The proposed levy is a charge of 1.75% of the value of electronic transactions and is expected to come into effect in February 2022.
The levy will cover mobile money payments, bank transfers, merchant payments, and inward remittances. The originator of the transactions will bear the charge except for inward remittances, which will be borne by the recipient.
However, the introduction of the said tax had generated mixed feelings in the country with people expressing their concerns that it will bring more hardship on the people.
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