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Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Issue tax waivers and clear antiretroviral drugs at ports – Minority to govt

The Minority in Parliament wants the Finance Ministry to immediately grant tax exemption waivers for the immediate clearance of anti-retroviral drugs and other medical equipment and consumables at the port.

They are also demanding the implementation of an automated tax exemption waiver system for medical consumables and equipment to curtail needless delays in clearing such items at the port.

This comes of the back of alleged abandonment of donated containers of HIV anti-retroviral drugs since July at the ports.

The situation has resulted in a shortage of anti-retroviral drugs for persons living with HIV.

In a statement, the caucus indicated that persons who depended on the Abacavir Lamivudine regime were at an elevated risk of developing resistance to this antiretroviral drug, rendering it ineffective against the virus.

”This is a national emergency and if unchecked could lead to an increase in the prevalence rate of HIV in Ghana, an increase in morbidity and mortality for Persons Living with HIV, and an increase in the overall cost of HIV management in Ghana.

“The Health and well-being of Ghanaians are non-negotiable, and we urge the government to act swiftly and responsibly in addressing this crisis,” the statement read in parts.

Meanwhile, they are proposing reforms at the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning to ensure that systemic failures that lead to needless delays in the performance of its functions are eradicated.

The Minority added that should the risk crystallize, the government would require more funding to deal with the HIV challenge in Ghana.

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Below is the full statement:

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