The Minority in Parliament has for the umpteenth time accused President Nana Akufo-Addo of insensitivity to the plight of Ghanaians.
According to the National Democratic Congress (NDC) legislators, the decision by the President to once again embark on his 10-day trip to some European countries and Guyana on a chartered luxurious private jet, at a time when government is seeking to introduce the E-Levy, is the highest level of disregard for the sufferings of the masses.
Speaking to the media in Parliament on Friday, the Minority’s Spokesperson on Foreign Affairs, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, said the President is spending over GH¢4 million on his trip.
“In the midst of these demonstrations and all the widespread agitations, the President, at 1pm yesterday, took off on the ultra-luxurious LXDIO which cost the Ghanaian taxpayer $14,000 an hour.
“This sixth nation tour, we have done the conservative estimate. At the end of the tour, when the President returns, he would have spent a colossal amount of $776,000. At today’s exchange, that is some GH¢4.9 million.
“We are saying this strengthens our resolve that we remain opposed to the E-levy. We would do everything in our power to ensure that this E-levy does not see the light of day,” he said.
But in a sharp rebuttal, the Deputy Majority Leader, Alexander Afenyo-Markin, accused the Minority of engaging in needless populism.
According to the Effutu Member of Parliament, the E-Levy is a game-changer that must be embraced by all.
“This is an important levy. Our roads and the unemployment situation [in which] we find ourselves; many of our youth graduate and they want to get jobs but the public sector cannot take everybody.
“So, this E-levy, as is contained in the budget statement, is aimed at also looking at creating opportunities for our young men and women who want to take advantage of the private sector.
“The main concern has been source of capital [so] government is looking to using part of this levy to support our young entrepreneurs,” he explained.