‘GH¢12.2bn in Ghanaians’ pockets?’ Ato Forson laughs off govt’s claim

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Minority Spokesperson on Finance, Cassiel Ato Forson, has ridiculed the government’s claim that it has put GH¢12.2 billion in the pockets of Ghanaians.

Speaking to Evans Mensah on Joy FM’s Top Story on Wednesday, Mr Forson described the argument as one-sided because the government has taken more from Ghanaians than it has given them.

“In as much as government is talking about how much it has given to people, they should as well quantify the amount they are taking from people,” he said.

The Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, while presenting the 2020 Budget statement in Parliament, said Government has directly or indirectly put GH¢12.2 billion into the pockets of Ghanaians since 2017 through its major initiatives and social interventions.

But reacting to the comment on Top Story, Mr Ato Forson said, “it is laughable for them to come out with an argument that they have given GH¢12.2 billion to Ghanaians when they have also imposed taxes on Ghanaians.”

He indicated that the government has increased levies on industries and these industries, in turn, pass it on to their customers who are the ordinary Ghanaians.

“They must access the incidence of those taxes and the incidence is definitely not with the businesses, the incidence is with the customers,” he emphasised.

He said government boasts of providing financial freedom to Ghanaians by reducing the electricity bills by over GH¢1.8 billion, adding that, “have they forgotten that over that period fuel prices kept going up?”

The Minority Spokesperson on Finance asked, “how much have you taken from the ordinary Ghanaian as a result of fuel prices increase from January 2017to date?”  

“In the coming days, I am also going to quantify how much they have taken out of the ordinary Ghanaian pockets. And it will surprise you to know that the amount will be far in excess of what they claiming that they have given to Ghanaians.”

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