ACCRA AS ONLY ‘CASH COW’ FOR GHANA DANGEROUS – Bantama MP

…Contributes over 90% of Govt’s Annual Revenue

Member of Parliament for Bantama Constituency, Hon. Daniel Okyem Aboagye, hqqas made a worrying observation that Ghana faces a very dangerous prospect if one region continues to provide over 90% of government’s total revenue.
He indicated that though there is not much the authorities could do to get businesses to gravitate away from the capital region in favour of others; the current situation could spell doom for the country if a disaster were to hit the Greater Accra.
Hon Aboagye made the observation at a 2-day sensitization workshop organised for members of the Parliamentary Press Corps (PPC) by the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) at Prampram on the taxation system in Ghana.
A chief revenue officer of the GRA during a presentation on forms of taxes indicated that Greater Accra offices have consistently collected on the average 93% of total revenue of the country over the past many years.
According to him, Accra’s direct tax contribution compared to other regions in 2014 was 94.15% to 4.72% respectively, 93.72 % to 5.02% in 2015, 93.70 % to 5.04% in 2016, 93.98% to 4.72% in 2017 and then 94.02% to 4.69% in the 2018 provisional figures.
The capital region’s indirect tax contribution to other regions, he said, is also high contributing over 60% average annually.
The annual indirect tax contribution to the Accra offices show that in 2014, 93.57% was collected compared to the 6.43% for other regions. In 2015 it was 65.38% to 3.29%, 2016 67.20% to 4.38%, 2017 70.13% to 5.08% and in 2018 72.11% to 5.11%.
Though the indirect tax contribution for Accra appeared to have declined in 2015 and 2016, it picked up again in 2017 and the provisional figure for 2018 already indicates it is moving towards the 90% mark.
Hon. Daniel Aboagye noted that this statistic does bode well for the revenue generation capacity of the country and urged the GRA to do more to get the rest of the regional offices to increase their annual contributions.
The Bantama MP who also made a presentation on the topic, “Making the taxation system in Ghana more effective: the perspective of an entrepreneur,” argued that the Ghana Beyond Aid initiative is a panacea for addressing the challenges of the country.
According to him, contrary to popular opinion, the Ghana Beyond Aid initiative has been in operation since the days of Dr. Kwame Nkrumah but under different names.
“When Kwame Nkrumah proclaimed that the Blackman is capable of managing his affairs, what did he meant? He was talking of Ghana and Africa beyond aid.”
Presidents from Jerry Rawlings to John Mahama, he said, also advocated for programmes that sought to wean Ghana from foreign dependency, which also fit the term Ghana beyond aid.
Hon. Daniel Aboagye urged members of the Parliamentary Press Corps and journalists in general to support the policy to succeed because it is the only solution that could make the country truly independent.
He averred that Ghana has come a long way in its economic journey but stressed it has not yet reached its destination and urged Ghanaians to contribute their quota to ensure the country develops on its own terms.

By Osumanu Al-Hassan/uthmanhass@gmail.com

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