All the 275 MPs in Ghana’s parliament will collectively enjoy a quantum of $13.3 million in tax waiver per a bill laid before the house by the government in connection with their $28 million car loan.
“Request for waiver of the Import Duty, Import GETFund Levy, Import NHIL, Import VAT, EXIM levy, COVID-19 Recovery Levy, Special Import Levy, ECOWAS Levy, AU Levy, Inspection Fees, and Withholding Tax (ITS Tax Deposit) amounting to the Ghana cedi equivalent of thirteen million, three hundred and eighty-seven thousand, five hundred United States Dollars (US$13,387,500.00) on vehicles to be procured for Members of Parliament of the Eighth Parliament of Ghana (2021-2024) and the Members of the Eighth Council of State (2022-2024),” the bill laid by the Finance Ministry on Wednesday, 14 July 2021 read.
Meanwhile, the Finance Committee of Parliament has recommended the discontinuation of advancing car loans to Members of Parliament.
This follows public backlash at the tabling of the $28-million loan deal for MPs to buy cars by Mr Ofori-Atta.
The Finance Committee of the chamber suggested in its report that the practice be discontinued.
Parts of the report read: “These legitimate concerns are fueled by the fact that, of all the Article 71 officeholders, it is only members of Parliament and Members of the Council of State who benefit from these vehicle loans, a large part of which are re-paid by the state”.
“The Committee took the view that, as representatives of the people, Members of Parliament cannot continue to leave these concerns unattended”.
“That weakens the confidence Ghanaians have in us. We have a responsibility to reflect the values and ideals of the people we represent”.
“Accordingly, the Committee strongly recommends to Parliament the discontinuation of the current vehicle loan arrangement for MPs and Council of State Members”.
“Members of Parliament and Members of the Council of State should have similar duty post vehicle arrangements as other Article 71 officeholders”.
“And the Committee respectfully recommends that Parliament and the Parliamentary Service take the necessary steps to ensure that this happens”.
“The instant vehicle loan arrangement for MPs and Council of State Members before us today should therefore be the last one the state is sponsoring.”