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NPP PUNCHES MAHAMA - Over corruption and poor show in 2013


Photo ReportingNPP PUNCHES MAHAMA - Over corruption and poor show in 2013

The New Patriotic Party yesterday held a forum to assess the performance of the Mahama-led National Democratic Congress administration in the year 2013, with the speakers concluding that the administration did not only perform abysmally poor but was also characterised by massive, systematic corruption, unprecedented in the history of the nation.

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Drama At Ministers’ Vetting

Anthony Akoto Osei, Minority Spokesperson on Finance, cited various instances to buttress the point that the President performed poorly on all fronts of the national economy, leading to a massive depreciation of the nation’s currency by 24%, non-payment of statutory payments, unbearable cost of living, among others, and the resultant downgrading of Ghana’s credit rating by three major credit agencies: Fitch, Moody’s and Standard and Poors.

Nana Akomea, a former Communications Director of the party, noted that the situation was aggravated by the systematic and deliberate manner in which the nation’s resources were looted by the NDC government and their cronies through dubious deals under various schemes, such as GYEEDA and Subah.

The abysmal performance of the Mahama government, coupled with the high levels of corruption, according to Dr Akoto Osei, resulted in a lot of unpleasant economic experiences for the average citizen.

“Parents in 2013 had a hard time paying school fees. Individuals and businesses struggled to pay higher utility bills. Ghanaian consumers’ confidence declined. Ghanaian businesses struggled to deal with the ‘dumso-dumso’ phenomenon. The cost of doing business increased. Business confidence declined. Contractors were not paid,” he cited these to buttress his case.

He added: “Service providers including school feeding caterers were not paid. Public workers were paid but had no work to do. Teacher trainee allowances were stopped. Workers experienced salary arrears and were threatened with a freeze on wages. Importers were faced with higher tariffs. Because of arrears in DACF, developmental projects in the MMDA’s came to a stop. The National Health Insurance faced severe challenges because of arrears.”

Dr Akoto Osei urged Ghanaians to prepare themselves for more difficult times in 2014, challenging the claim by President Mahama and his functionaries that this year would be better than 2013.

He noted that the introduction of increased Value Added Tax rate and the upward adjustment of tariffs would combine to increase cost of living and put so much financial burden on the average Ghanaian.

Dr Akoto Osei further noted that in spite of the government’s decision to impose additional tax on the people, including even condom tax, the fiscal deficit for 2013 was still very high, “projected at 10.2 % of GDP but likely to exceed 11 % of GDP when the final figures are in.” He explained further: “In 2013 simply put Government lived beyond it means by an additional GHC 9 billion cedis.”

Delays in the payment of statutory funds have become a regular feature of the economic management strategy of the NDC government since 2009 and Dr Akoto Osei recalled that in fiscal year 2013 there was further accumulation of arrears in DACF ( GHC 450 million),GETFUND (GHC 240 million), NHIF (GHC151 million), and SSNIT contributions by government (GHC 695 million).

“Together these amount to over GHC 1.5 billion. This does not include arrears owed to road contractors, salary arrears owed to public sector workers, arrears owed to suppliers of goods and services to government agencies including the security services and secondary institutions as well as caterers for the school feeding programme,” he explained.

Source: thestatesmanonline



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