New public debt alarming, each Ghanaian owes ¢7,800 – Ato Forson

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The Minority in Parliament says with the country’s public debt now at ¢236.1 billion, each Ghanaian owes ¢7,836.

Cassiel Ato Forson, the Minority Spokesperson on Finance, said the new figure is due to what to the continuous reckless borrowing by the Akufo-Addo government.

He stated that Ghana’s debt has increased from ¢120.3 billion in December 2016 to ¢236.1 billion by 31st March 2020, with the Akufo-Addo government having nothing to show for the borrowing.

“I have been looking at the Summary of Economic and Financial Data for May 2020 put out by the Bank of Ghana. It is intriguing to observe that Ghana’s total debt stock as of March 2020 stood at ¢236.1 billion.

“The data further reveals that Ghana’s debt increased from ¢120.3 billion in December 2016 to ¢236.1 billion by 31st March 2020. Despite his vociferous public debt politics in opposition, President Akufo-Addo has added some ¢116 billion to our public debt in just three years and a few months.

“Analyzed closely, President Akufo-Addo’s debt accumulation is almost akin to Ghana’s entire public debt since independence. It is even more troubling to note that if the public debt is shared among all Ghanaians, each of us owes a whopping ¢7,836.00.”

Mr Forson in a statement said the situation was worrying.

The former Deputy Finance Minister further accused Bank of Ghana of disbursing ¢5.5 billion to finance government operations without recourse to the laws of Ghana.

He alleged that Bank of Ghana has printed ¢5.5 billion to finance some governmental operations and is planning to print even more in flagrant breach of the Bank of Ghana Act.

While cautioning the financial entity, Mr Forson said, the Governor must know that there are consequences for his actions.

“The 2019 Domestic Revenue was ¢51,988.01m and 5 per cent of this is about ¢2,599.40m

“Regrettably, the Bank of Ghana has already disbursed ¢5.5 billion to finance Government of Ghana’s operations without recourse to the laws of Ghana.

“In clear terms, the Bank of Ghana has printed ¢5.5bn to finance GoG’s operations and is planning to print even more. This is a flagrant breach of the Bank of Ghana Act.

“In any case, why has the Bank of Ghana become an extension of the Ministry of Finance? Instead of government aggressively embarking on fiscally austere measures such as pruning down the size of government by cutting down the number of government appointees to make savings, the government is rather stampeding the resources of the Bank of Ghana at will.”

In view of this, Mr. Ato Forson said the Minority in Parliament will be writing to the Chairman of the Finance Committee to demand the presence of the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori Atta, and the Governor of the Bank of Ghana, Dr. Ernest Addison before the house.

Meanwhile, Mr. Forson who is also the MP for Ajumako-Enyan-Esiam Constituency has donated 30,000 pieces of reusable face masks and other PPEs to the Ejumako-Enyan Essien Health Directorate to help fight Covid-19.

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