The Finance Minister, Mr. Ken Ofori-Atta, says that he doesn’t think the Minority in Parliament’s claims that he should be fired have any weight.
He told the Adhoc Committee that was hearing the motion to censure that the people who made it didn’t have “enough weight for censure” to make their claims.
Mr. Ofori-Atta said that all the claims made against him were false, and he went on to prove it.
He said that the claim that economic data was given to Parliament that was not true was completely false.
“Since I took office in 2017, I’ve done my job with honesty and integrity.”
“While I was in charge of the Ministry of Finance, there were big improvements in how accurately public finances were reported.
“Today, under President Nana Akufo-Addo, the public purse is being managed with more accountability and transparency than at any other time during the Fourth Republic,”
He said that since 2017, the government has followed the rules for reporting in the Public Financial Management Act 2016 (Act 921). This includes Budget Implementation reports, Fiscal Reports, Public Debt Reports, Petroleum Revenue Management Reports, ESLA reports, and other reports.
On the issue of not counting the costs of cleaning up the financial sector and the payments to IPPs in the energy sector as part of the deficit, the Finance Minister said that, contrary to what others said, they were clearly stated.
“I want to stress, and the Budget document shows this, that these payments were taken into account in the fiscal framework.”
“Energy sector IPP payments were treated as “amortization,” and non-cash financial sector clean-up payments were reflected in the “memo item” (see Appendix 2A of the Fiscal Tables in the relevant Annual Budget).” said the minister.
Ghanaians will remember that in May 2020, Dr. Albert Touna Mama, who was the IMF’s country representative at the time, went on Joy FM’s News File Program to say that the government did not misrepresent data, as was being said.
This was in support of the data presented by the Ministry of Finance. Dr. Touna Mama said that the government did not give the IMF the numbers that were in their statements.
He said that the difference in numbers was due to different ways of calculating. He also said that the number in their statement for the fiscal deficit was a number they made up themselves from the data the government gave them, adding payments from the financial and energy sectors according to their method, which was different from the government’s method.