Parliament Passes E-levy Bill...Minority Stages Walkout

The rubicon has finally been crossed with the passage of the controversial Electronic Levy (E-Levy) bill, despite a spirited attempt by the Minority caucus in Parliament to shoot it down, including the obvious staging of a walkout.

According to the Minority, the Majority pulled a surprise one on them because E-levy was not listed in Parliament’s business statement for this week.

According to the Minority leader, Haruna Iddrisu: “We have time and again warned and cautioned that we never want to be taken by surprise on a major economic policy bill of government and we will not accept that culture."

So when you (Majority Caucus) did not have the numbers, you were hesitant, you won’t come before the House, now that you think that you have some reasonable numbers then you say ‘go to the business of item 27’”.

However, by a voice vote by the Majority caucus after the Speaker of Parliament suspended sitting for 30 minutes, the second reading of the bill was approved.

Third reading

Subsequently, the Finance Minister moved the motion for the bill to be considered the third time and it was subsequently seconded.

The question was put by the Speaker and was approved through a voice vote.

"The electronic bill duly read the third time and passed," the Speaker said.

This means the controversial levy which has generated a lot of discussions in the country has been passed awaiting presidential assent.

Meanwhile, the bill has been reduced from 1.75 percent to 1.5 percent.