Member of Parliament, North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa

Member of Parliament (MP) of North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, has said the opposition’s position on the introduction of the 10% tax on betting is justified. 

In his view, the Akufo-Addo government has been reckless in spending the resources that have come to its disposal since assuming office.

Citing the recent issues surrounding the Bank of Ghana’s new head office building currently under construction, the former Deputy Information Minister said the government deliberately inflated the cost of the project.

In a tweet on Wednesday, August 23, Mr Ablakwa said the opposition to the new tax is justified and that it should be abolished immediately. 

“It is no longer difficult to appreciate why Ghanaians get so angry & extremely agitated when govt introduces new taxes. How can you recklessly inflate the BoG office project from $81.8 million to US$222.7 million in two years and expect the youth to accept your obnoxious tax on betting?” he tweeted.

The Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) on Tuesday, August 15, commenced the implementation of a 10% withholding tax on all gross gaming winnings.

According to the GRA, the withholding tax will be charged on profits accrued after each win and the existing 15% Value Added Tax rate on each stake will no longer be charged.

The GRA said that the new policy is in line with an amendment to the Income Tax Act 2023 (No.2), Act 1094.

Following this, the Youth Wing of the NDC has asked the government to immediately abolish it. 

According to them, the “insensitive policy” will worsen the plight of the already impoverished youths.

In a press statement issued by the National Youth Organiser of the party, George Opare Addo, the NDC Youth Wing threatened series of protests at the Ministry of Finance and other government offices across the country should the government fail to abolish the tax.