The Caucus for Mature Democrats has been observing with interest, attempts by the President and his desperate and dysfunctional Government, to force the e-levy on the suffering people of Ghana, while he criticizes the rating agencies for exposing his mismanagement and economic abyss of despair.
There is no doubt that the Ghanaian economy, due to massive corruption and lack of accountability, is in deep crisis. Crisis characterized by huge budget deficit, rising inflation, unsustainable public debt, a rapidly depreciating currency, high unemployment numbers, high-interest rate , ever rising cost of living and loss of confidence among investors and citizens.
The causality between arrogance and economic mismanagement; is established, in this case, where Akufo Addo in 2015, then flag bearer, praised Moody agency for down rating Ghana`s economy to B- . Surprisingly this same Akufo Addo-now President- expresses doubt in Moody`s rating of his economy and calls on Africa for urgent reforms in credit rating. The arrogance and pride of a corrupt President, who on one hand mismanages the economy and on the other hand arrogantly seeks to justify himself by calling on the world to reject the Caa1 rating of his collapsing economy; the worst rating ever in the history of Ghana.
Pride and Realities
Akufo Addo is too proud to appreciate the pressing realities of his mismanaged economy. Ghana has a horrendous national debt of GHC 363 billion, which is 83% of GDP. The national revenue is GHC 536 billion and we require GHC247 billion to service our debt. The economy as a result, has serious difficulty with external and internal debt payments. Creditors are unwilling to lend because they fear losing their money.
Ghana is Brook
As a result, Ghana is broke. MCE`s are not getting their allocations. Contractors have not been paid for the past four years; basic schools have no textbooks for the past three years; SHS and NABCO have payment arrears for several months. Poverty levels have increased and Ghanaians are increasingly crying out for help. In spite of these constraints, there is little or no physical discipline on the part of this government. We have over 110 ministers and over 1,500 presidential staffers. We have expenditures such as hiring luxury jets for several international trips; costing millions of dollars while the presidential jet is used by relatives of the President; we have the missing GHC 12,8 billion which the Auditor General`s report cannot account for. We have the $24 million tax exemptions to Akufo Addo`s brother, for a hotel project; As I write, the Government has suffered punitive measures (payment) for not paying its International debt in 2021.
Payments During Covid-19
During the Covid -19 period, Akufo Addo received the highest bailout in Ghana`s history. One billion dollars concessional facility from the IMF ; another One billion dollars from SDR allocation; 430 million dollars from the World Bank; 250 million dollars from the Stabilization Fund and GHC 10 billion from the Central Bank; adding up to a total of about GHC 33 billion. Besides, there was also the Covid Support Fund which has not been accounted for.
The government must come down to earth, swallow its pride and arrogance and create a platform for urgent and constructive dialogue among stakeholders. This will expose and reverse the myth, tricks, and lies surrounding the economy. It will also fashion out a robust set of policy responses as a solution to the economic abyss before disaster strikes.
Dr E.K. Hayford ( Executive Director)
Nadia Alhassan (Deputy Director)
Caucus for Mature Democrats (CMD )
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