President Nana Akufo-Addo says there’s no justification for only 7.8% of the Ghanaian population to carry the direct tax burden of 30.8million people.
Speaking at an opening ceremony of National Labour Conference 2022 in Kwahu today 28th February on the theme “Strengthening Tripartism for Building Peaceful Labour Relations and Resilient Economy’’, the president said it is the responsibility of every Ghanaian to pay tax and not only 2.4m people of our population as it stands now.
”We must provide an opportunity for every Ghanaian to contribute towards nation-building. The proposed E-Levy is one such innovative fiscal measure that will help improve our tax to GDP ratio on an equitable basis. I believe strongly that it is in the public interest and it should be enacted into law.” He said
The president also assured the Trade Unions Congress (TUC) that a review of the Labour Act will be concluded with a legal framework being erected to protect all categories of workers.
This follows an appeal made by the Secretary-General of the Trades Union Congress, Dr Anthony Yaw Baah who noted that ”the single spine pay policy was introduced in 2010, to deal with inequalities in public sector pay but after a decade of implementation of the singly spine pay policy, we are witnessing growing pay inequality across the public service. ”
He continued that ”Some junior officers in some public service institutions are earning much higher salaries than some senior officers in other institutions in the public service.
“In the wider public sector, in fact, some CEO of some state enterprises are earning much higher salaries than the president of the Public. Even though some of these state enterprises are making huge losses.
“In 2021 and 2022, when public service workers on the single spine were given 4% and 7% pay increase respectively, management and staff of some public sector institutions awarded themselves over 20% pay increase in their basic salaries in addition to the numerous allowances they enjoy. This situation has to change; the reward system in the public service must be fair. In the private sector, many workers have lost their jobs; others are facing job and income insecurity.”
The president in his response said “Let me respond to the Secretary-General of the Trades Union Congress by saying that, I recognize the urgency of concluding the review of the Labour Act and erecting a legal framework that will protect all categories of workers and enable government’s progrmmes to have a positive impact on the condition of life of the working people of our country.
“One such, potentially the most exciting, is the 10 billion cedis YouStart programme which is intended to help address youth unemployment in the country. Government has directed financial and technical support towards young entrepreneurs in the country to develop commercially viable businesses and create jobs for other youth.
“In effect, it will be a vehicle for supporting young entrepreneurs to gain access to capital, training, technical skills and mentoring to enable them to launch and start their businesses.”