According to the minority in parliament, the president’s speech on the economy’s state did not accurately reflect the actual situation.
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It claimed that the address ignored the general dejection and disillusionment among Ghanaians who were experiencing intolerable circumstances.
The nation has become “bankrupt and insolvent,” according to Minority Leader Dr. Cassiel Ato Forson, who responded to the President’s address in Parliament on Wednesday.
He continued, “Mr. President, you have failed to reduce the size of government and public expenditure, and as a result, we are currently unable to repay our debt, with Ghana having officially defaulted in the payments of its debt since January 2022.
Mr. President, your government permitted the Bank of Ghana to print GH50 billion in 2022 and GH4 billion more in the first quarter of 2023, which is a major contributing factor to Ghana’s hyperinflation.
He claimed that unemployment had reached a record high, that the cedi had depreciated by 20% in January 2022, that inflation was currently on the rise, and that the monetary rate was 28%.
The economy is in shambles, according to the Minority Leader, in large part because “your government placed this suffering on us.” The loan rate is currently 40%.
“Mr. President, this is your scorecard and this reflects the real state of our country,” Dr. Forson added.
The Opposition Chief Whip, Governor Kwame Agbodza, stated that the President should have used the opportunity to inform Parliament and Ghanaians about the precise measures he was taking to reduce unnecessary spending.
I am startled and disappointed in the President for trying to exonerate corrupt officials in his administration once more. Everyone is aware of a DCE in the Northern Region who has acknowledged receiving money from the COVID-19 fund for herself and members of her party.
We anticipate independent inquiries into this, but the President once again diminished our hope by acting as though he had already cleared everyone of their wrongdoings.
The Adaklu MP claimed that by remaining silent on the subject of corruption, the President has decided to support the wrongdoings “his people are doing.”
Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, the MP for North Tongu, questioned why the President kept blaming COVID-19 and the Russia-Ukraine war for the weak status of the economy.
He claimed that the two events had an impact on practically every nation in the globe and questioned why only Ghana had been declared bankrupt and insolvent.
“I am horrified that the President refused to accept blame or responsibility, as this does not give us confidence in his ability to resolve the issue. It implies that he will keep acting in the same way that has led to our current situation, he explained.
Mr. Ablakwa added that he was horrified by the President’s propensity to exonerate people who had been accused of financial misconduct.
He was taken aback by President Akufo-ability Addo’s to persuade the legislature that COVID-19 funding had not been misused in the face of a devastating audit report from the Auditor General.
The publishing of the Auditor-report General’s was attempted by the President’s own Attorney-General, which civil society and all of us have strongly criticized.
He said, “The Auditor-report General’s is replete with findings of corruption, diversion, misuse, misapplication, and abuse of COVID-19 funding.
Mr Ablakwa opined that there was no report that could be more credible than the Auditor-General’s report in relation to how public funds had been utilised.
I am disappointed with the President’s actions today since we tend to give the Auditor-report General’s more credence than the President’s statements.
“The President, in such a prejudiced manner, is busily clearing everyone, even before the Public Accounts Committee of Parliament looks at the Auditor-conclusions,” General’s he stated.
The President’s “swipe at the diplomatic community” in which he accused them of interfering in the domestic affairs of the country alarmed Mr. Ablakwa, the Ranking Member on the Foreign Affairs Committee.
“Cleary, this is a subtly insulting statement about the German Ambassador. What the Ambassador was simply stating was that ‘you have come to us for debt cancellation and we will go to our taxpayers to authorize those money for you; but you must also show that you are doing your homework by lowering the size of your government’.
You seek their assistance, speak with the Chinese and other members of the comity of nations, but you do not want their advice because you want to carry on with your bad behavior, he added.