Governance expert and a former Minister of Local Government, Rural Development and Environment of Ghana, Kwadwo Adjei-Darko says taxing is the drastic measure to develop Ghana hence the introduction of new taxes is in the right direction.
Mr. Adjei-Darko said developing the country will largely depend on the taxation of the Ghanaian people and that informed the government’s decision to introduce new taxes.
“In most cases, in Ghana, during a discourse, we say we started with South Korea, Singapore, even Rwanda just recently and where they are, but, often, we do not take into consideration the steps they took before attainting such feet to follow suit as a country when comparing ourselves with them,” he told Original 91.9FM’s Kwaku Owusu Adjei on Adwenekasa Thursday.
“No country has developed without a trace in their history that at one time or the other they made huge sacrifices,” he averred.
According to the former Minister, “in South Korea, from 1945 to present they’ve gone through six republics they have had dictators, democrats, and authoritarians – those who have zero tolerance for divergent views. One government will rule and it’d be removed through coup then assassination. At a point in Korea what brought rapid growth is the government began focusing on cheap exports.”
To achieve cheap exports, he explains the Korean government started taking several measures including;” Repression of workers right and also labor cost was very low, workers were underpaid, manufacturing workers worked ten hours each day. In addition, safety regulations and things to protect workers were not the concern of employees under government “
He alleged many salaried workers illegally evade taxes in Ghana and it hinders the development of the country.
“Over here we want to develop but we are not saying let follow the path of South Korea,” Mr. Adjei-Darko said adding that, “there has not been a day you’d listen to the news without deplorable roads, schools, water challenges but how many people pay taxes in Ghana apart from government workers – government deducts the taxes and it implies it’s paying the taxes? How many self-employed people pay tax? In a lot of countries masons, carpenters, plumbers can’t be hired directly like ‘I like Adjei-Darko I have built my house wire for me’ you have to contact an organization and they’ll let someone deliver the service, so, I pay through that organization to be taxed.”
Conversation and anger towards the President Akufo-Addo government have been renewed following the introduction of Covid-19 tax in the yet-to-be approved 2021 budget on Friday, March 12.
The Information Minister, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah said Ghanaians will have to pay for the free provision of water and electricity introduced by the government in 2020 as part of measures to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus.
“It was free to the people of Ghana at the time.”
“When we say free electricity it doesn’t mean that the IPP producer is also going to say because the President has said free electricity I won’t charge for it,” Oppong Nkrumah said.
By: Bernard Ralph Adams | Originalfmonline.com | Ghana