The president of policy think tank IMANI Africa, Franklin Cudjoe has come under severe criticisms by a section of Ghanaian social media users for advising telecommunications companies not to obey directives by the Ministry of Communications to them to stop deducting the Communication Service Tax(CST) upfront.
The Economist and policy analyst, speaking on The Big Issue on Citi TV, had argued that the directive is incoherent:“ The conversation is that the telcos are stealing revenues. Now you have imposed a tax and they are taxing on the tax and showing it, that one too you have a problem. You are saying they shouldn’t show it. But you said I am a thief. And I am now showing that you have introduced a tax that you will be collecting. In order for you not to feed that narrative into the public’s mind and actually give mileage to the narrative, that the telcos are stealing. They are saying, uhuh, have you seen the tax now is 9% and if you buy one cedi you get 0.93, what can be wrong with this? So, I think they should disregard the narrative.”
But many on social media have not taken kindly to his submission and have subjected him to severe criticism on social media.
The Ministry of Communications has directed telcos to only deduct the 9% CST after only subscribers have used the credit or data they buy but not before.
But many have stated that given that the CST is a consumer tax, consumers must pay whether it is done upfront or ‘back end’.
Below are a some of the adverse reactions to Franklin Cudjoe: