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Politics of Friday, 24 July 2020


Mid-year budget review: Finance Minister hits back at NDC

Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta

Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta has debunked claims that the budget was geared towards election.

The Mid-year budget review which was read yesterday has generated a lot of discussions. The ruling government has described it as hopeful but the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) thinks it's empty.

Member of Parliament for Yapei Kusawgu, John Jinapor says the Finance Minister was dishonest.

“If today your revenues drop, what you do is that you prioritise. The Minister is asking for another GHS11 billion. You have a shortfall of GHS13 billion and he is asking for another GHS11 billion. Clearly the Minister’s mind and the whole budget is geared towards elections,” he said.

Ranking Member on Parliament’s Finance Committee, Cassiel Ato Forson describes it as unacceptable.

“I am disappointed as a Ghanaian and I am disappointed in the Akufo-Addo government. I say this because the mid-year review that was presented to us was very empty. There was nothing in it for the ordinary Ghanaian for us to be happy about. Rather, we are receiving some major shocks to the extent that we are hearing for the first time that government has spent or intends to spend GH¢11.1 billion on coronavirus expenditure alone without giving us a breakdown of what the money has been used for,” he said on Citi News.

However, the Finance Minister, speaking in an exclusive interview with Kwami Sefa Kayi, said in as much as the opposition is entitled to its views, government has no intention of using any money budgeted for campaigns.

"It’s not time for politics when lives are at stake," he fired back.

He asked the NDC to "put yourself in the shoes of govt and imagine what you would do. it’s hard work; we are not resting on our’s not normal times".

"We’ve managed the economy well and this has been appreciated by a lot of people…we are dealing with known unknowns; the situation we are dealing with is unprecedented…so we can't just get up and say anything we like," he added in the interview on Peace FM morning show 'Kokrokoo'.

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