Former General Secretary of the Christian Council of Ghana, Rev. Dr. Kwabena Opuni-Frimpong is calling on the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) to tax all religious bodies in the country.
In his view, singling out churches alone to pay tax for selling these ‘holy’ items like annointing oil is discriminatory.
“The church is not the only place where anointing oils and other items are sold. There are Muslim clerics who also sell these things so they should also be taxed” Rev Opuni Frimpong stressed.
His comment follows a decision by the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) to tax churches in the country.
Commissioner of the GRA, Kofi Nti has promised to pay informants 25 per cent of a penalty against churches hiding under a fellowship to make money without paying taxes to the state.
The issue has become murkier after President Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo backed plans for churches in the country to be taxed, grounding his position on the fact that churches have now moved into the realm of wealth creation and prosperity.
Speaking at the 2018 Synod of the Global Evangelical Church in Accra Thursday, the President observed churches were no more the charity institutions they used to be as they are now focusing into education and healthcare delivery among others, thus placing them in the tax net.
But on Asempa FM’s Ekosii Sen programme Friday, Rev. Dr. Opuni-Frimpong said government is stepping on a mine field.
He explained that, churches already pay taxes on their revenue-generating businesses thus introducing another tax will be a great disservice to the work of God.
The former Christian Council General Secretary expressed concerned about what he says is the wrong impression created in the public that churches do not pay taxes.
Rev. Dr. Opuni-Frimpong suggested that, all religious bodies in the country must be taxed to ensure parity.