Nana Konadu addressing the media
Flagbearer of the National Democratic Party (NDP), Nana Konadu Agyeman-Rawlings, has bemoaned the extremely high taxes in Ghana.
According to her, the current tax regime in the country cannot support the growth of businesses, hence the need for a ‘better’ tax system.
The NDP leader said this when she took her turn at the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) Conversation Series with Presidential candidates ahead of the December 7 elections.
She said although taxes were essential for undertaking infrastructural developments and other state projects, it was wrong for government to overburden citizens and businesses with taxes.
Nana Konadu added that no country has developed by burdening its citizens and businesses with taxes.
When taxes are very high, crop production ebb, businesses suffer and eventually close down, she indicated.
“The government is telling us only a few Ghanaians pay taxes. The NDP wants to differ. Everybody pays tax on rural water, National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), these taxes are on everything that we buy.”
A recent report by Databank Financial Services indicated that Ghanaian businesses made 33 different tax payments a year, spent 224 hours a year filing tax returns which amounted to 32.70 percent of their total profits.
‘Dumsor Collapsing Businesses’
Mrs. Rawlings lambasted the Mahama administration in her 25-minute presentation in the IEA-Garden for woefully failing to resolve the perennial power crisis facing the country.
She explained that the power crisis was collapsing businesses which has led to job cuts, as well as forcing some businesses to migrate to neighbouring countries like Cote d’ Ivoire and Togo where the business environments seem to be relatively good.
She stated that to help address the energy crisis, the state needs to look out for ways of maximizing the generation of solar energy.
Mrs. Rawlings indicated that her government would pass a law that makes property developers incorporate solar energy technology into their construction like other countries have done, saying the NDP has already began engaging companies in Japan and other countries to see how best they can promote solar energy in Ghana if given the nod.
BY Melvin Tarlue