Imposition of Emission Levy by govt an opportunistic decision – A Rocha Ghana

The Deputy Director of A Rocha Ghana, Daryl Bosu, has criticized the government for imposing the Emission Levy on Ghanaians, stating that the idea behind the new tax policy is ‘flawed’.

The government on February 1 introduced a new tax policy on carbon dioxide equivalent emissions on internal combustion engine vehicles.

During an interview with Umaru Sanda Amadu on Eyewitness News on Citi FM, the Deputy Director of A Rocha Ghana, hit hard at the government, accusing it of being insensitive to Ghanaians for imposing the new tax.

The environmental campaigner stated that developed countries are more careful with the kind of emission taxes they impose on their people, describing the government as ‘opportunistic’.

“We [policy makers] go out there crying for justice, but we come back home and impose the tax on the day-to-day lives of Ghanaians just because they use diesel and petrol or they use vehicles. In fairness to the people of Ghana, we are actually being dealt with unfairly by our own government and unjustly by imposing this tax.”

“We also think he [government] is opportunistic. The government is being opportunistic in the sense that even for the developed countries. They are very careful with the kind of emission taxes or levies they impose upon their people,” Mr. Bosu asserted.

He observed that governments in parts of the world impose taxes on heavily polluted sectors and do not burden all persons who drive vehicles.

“It’s very sad to see that instead of exploring other opportunities, we go for the more stringent and regressive approach to compelling our people to action to deal with emissions. The whole tax on emissions is flawed in the sense that you put categories of motorcycles and tricycles together, and then you say all other vehicles up to 3000 capacity. A new vehicle has an emission efficiency different from a very old vehicle,” he said.

He lamented the lack of consultations on the emission levy, stating, “I think we need to keep pushing and discussing just like initiatives like the road tolls and all of that, we can come to a consensus to say let’s scrap it eventually.”

Policy Lead, Climate Finance, and Energy Transition for the Institute of Climate and Environmental Governance (ICEG), Kwesi Yamoah Abaidoo, speaking on Eyewitness News, expressed concerns about the lack of commitment by the government to invest revenue that will be accrued from the Emission Levy.

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