Parliament approves tax waivers for STC, MMT and others

Parliament has approved a total of GH¢41.480 million, being a tax waiver on vehicles to be procured by the Intercity STC Company Limited, Ministry of Regional Re-organisation and Development, the Metro Mass Transit Limited.

The waiver also covers ammunitions donated to the Ghana Immigration Service.

The tax waiver includes; GH¢25.144 million for 100 buses to be procured by the Intercity STC Company Limited; GH¢841,645 for ammunitions donated to the Ghana Immigration Service, GH¢708.652 million for vehicles to be acquired by the Ministry of Regional Re-organisation and Development and GH¢14.785 million for 50 buses to be procured by Metro Mass Transit Limited.

Dr Mark Assibey-Yeboah, Chairman of the Finance Committee moved the motion on the Report of the Finance Committee and was seconded by Mr Cassiel Ato Forson, Ranking Member of the Finance Committee.

In a remark Dr Assibey-Yeboah underlined the important role the MMT Company played in the transportation of passengers and goods across the country.

He said many people relied on their services as the only means of commuting from one place to another as the buses usually plied the rural-urban routes and intercity routes.

However, most of its buses were broken down, leading to a decline in the operations of the company; and in order to address the difficulties, Government approved the purchase of 100 buses, which has been deployed to service routes across the country.

He said the government also procured 50 additional buses for the companies, which have arrived at the Tema Port.

Dr Assibey-Yeboah explained that he request by MMT for tax waiver was to enable the company clear the buses awaiting clearance at the Tema port.

The Government also procured 100 buses for the company to augment the fleet of buses of the STC to enable the transport company revamp their operations and become more competitive,.

The buses were delivered in two tranches in November, 2019 and January 2020 but were currently at the port waiting for clearance.

Dr Assibey Yeboah said the request by STC for tax waiver is to enable the company clear the buses from the port and make them operational.

Mr Ato Forson stressed d the need for Parliament to evaluate the request for tax waivers to both Intercity STC Company and MMT, arguing that over the years the House had approved various loan facilities to the companies but there was no evidence to show whether the companies had performed to their maximum.

He said giving the huge tax waivers to the companies required the House to delve into their operations and finances to find out whether all these years the monies approved for them were used creditably.

“Mr Speaker, as I said, these are public money and we cannot continue giving them tax waivers and public money without demand in accountability,” he added.

Source: Ghana News Agency