Deputy Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, George Mireku Duker, has exposed the rationale behind the Minority's law suit against the government regarding the Electronic Transactions Levy (E-Levy) Bill.
Minority Leader of Parliament, Haruna Iddrisu, and his colleagues Mahama Ayariga and Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa have dragged the Attorney General to the Supreme Court over the approval of the Bill.
They contend that Parliament did not have the required number of at least half of its members present when the controversial tax policy was approved.
In their reliefs, they are praying the Apex Court for “a. A declaration that on the authority of the Supreme Court case of Justice Abdulai v. Attorney-General, Writ No. J1/07/2022 dated 9th March 2022, the constitutional quorum number for decision-making and voting within the meaning of Article 104(1) of the 1992 Constitution is 138 Members of Parliament out of the 275 Members of Parliament and not 137 Members of Parliament.
"b. A declaration that on a true and proper interpretation of articles 2(1)(b) and 104(1) of the 1992 Constitution of Ghana, there was no quorum to enable the 137 Members of Parliament of the Majority Caucus present in Parliament on 29th March 2022 to pass the Electronic Transactions Levy (‘’E-Levy’’).’’
They also are pleading with the court for a declaration that "on a true and proper interpretation of Article 104(1) of the 1992 Constitution of Ghana, the passing of the Electronic Transactions Levy (‘’E-Levy’’) by the 137 Members of Parliament of the Majority Caucus present in Parliament on the 29th March 2022 without the requisite quorum number of 138 Members of Parliament present in Parliament is null and void and of no legal effect".
The Minority further asks for an "order of the Honourable Court setting aside the passing of the Electronic Transactions Levy (‘’E-Levy’’) by the 137 Members of Parliament of the Majority Caucus present in Parliament on the 29th March 2022 as a nullity".
But to Mireku Duker, the Minority is using the suit to calm down the pressure on them as their plans to thwart the passage of the Bill have failed.
"I know this is a way of suppressing the pressure on the ground . . . but I know we've passed the E-Levy. In a week's time, the President, His Excellency will sign it. Ghanaians should have hoped that the money they're paying will inure to the benefit of all," he said on Peace FM's ''Kokrokoo''.
He also ridiculed them for resorting to the Supreme Court after making disparaging remarks about the Judiciary.
"They say they are going to court. It's good but I want them to be consistent. At a point, they say they don't believe in the judgement of the court. Consistency is very relevant because it bothers on conscience and people are watching as well as listening to us. You claim you don't believe in the Supreme Court but now you're sending your case to the Supreme Court. Let's accord respect to the institutions that we, as Parliamentarians, have built . . . we should note that, at a point, we can't lambast and disgrace them, then on another leg, we stand somewhere and say we are going to court," he stated.
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