You are here: HomeBusiness2005 01 22Article 73887

Business News of Saturday, 22 January 2005

Source: --

I am best African Finance Minister ....

... and Second Best World Finance Minister
... still waiting for the "Chinese Barber Loan"
... left Ghana with $1.7 billion national reserves

Accra, Jan. 21 - Mr Yaw Osafo-Maafo, Minister of Education and Sports-Designate on Friday said he chalked a string of successes as Finance Minister and would always feel proud for that feat. "I will walk with broad shoulders. I feel very proud of what I have achieved as Minister of Finance."

At a hearing of the Parliamentary Appointments Committee, The Former Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, said he met depleted national reserves of 270 million dollars and left behind a hefty 1.7 billion dollars.

He said a revenue base of 4.5 trillion cedis soared to 16.2 trillion cedis and trimmed an inflation rate of 40 per cent to 11.8 per cent. "I managed to hold in check the cedi during the election and Christmas period where things could have gone out of hand. The Ghana Stock Exchange index recorded a rise of 137 per cent."

While counting his blessing and achievements, Members reminded him of the IFC and CNTI loans transactions, which nearly blighted his career.

He said he made mistakes but was always careful that he acted in the national interest.

On the CNTI loan, he said he was waiting for a detailed piece of information from Hong Kong to take a decision of the matter.

He said his decoration by credible economic and financial magazines as the best African Finance Minister and Second Best World Finance Minister made him feel good in spite of what others thought, adding, "people are entitled to their views on the matter".

On his new Ministerial direction, he said he would seek to raise funds for sports development with more emphasis on the lesser known ones.

He said Ghana's qualification to the World Cup would make him a happy man.

Mr Osafo-Maafo called for a better condition of service for teachers as a way of motivating them to give off their best.
The Member for Akim Oda holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Mechanical Engineering from the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi.
He went into banking having worn the blue collar for just two years after schooling.