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‘Gov’t hiding the damage it has done to the economy’ – Felix Kwakye Ofosu Claims

Former Deputy Minister for Information, Felix Kwakye Ofosu, says the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, has been leading deliberate attempts to conceal the damage government has done to the economy.

According to the former National Democratic Congress appointee, this includes efforts to make the economy look better, despite the presence of contrary evidence.

Speaking in an interview with Evans Mensah on Top Story on Monday, he supported earlier assertions by former President John Dramani Mahama about the dwindling economy, and the incompetence of the government in addressing the matter.

In this regard, Mr. Ofosu explained that one of the areas where the government has been lying about is the actual value of budget deficits in its budget presentations.

Mr. Ofosu said over the years, the government has been engaging in a deliberate exercise of reducing its expenditure, as against its revenue, to paint the impression of a buoyant economy.

“Since 2018, they have been deliberately understating the budget deficit and the hiding key essential items, under what they claim to be footnotes. Only last week in the Finance Minister’s purported economic measures, he claimed that between 2017 to 2019, they had kept the budget deficit under 5%. He repeated this claim in the 2020 budget.

“Meanwhile, the budget deficit for 2018 was 7%. The budget deficit for 2019 was 7.5%. The deficit for 2020 was 15.7%. The deficit for 2021 was 12%. In fact, just after he read the 2022 budget in November, the market reacted adversely to it because they did not believe the figures that he was quoting”, he highlighted.

Touching on the raft of measures by government to deal with the current economic setbacks, Mr. Ofosu intimated that there is the need for government to heed to calls for a review of some of its flagship policies in order to salvage the economy.

Meanwhile, former President Mahama has accused the government of deceiving Ghanaians about the cause of the current economic crisis.

He said the government’s attribution of the current economic crisis to Covid-19 and the Russia-Ukraine crisis is a “bloody lie”.

Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, at a press conference in Accra last Thursday explained that “the war in Ukraine could not have come at a worse time for the global economy”.

Mr Ofori-Atta underscored the devastation wreaked by the Coronavirus pandemic on the country’s economy.

However, interacting with the Executives of the USA Chapter of the NDC in Boston over the weekend, the 2020 NDC Presidential Candidate said the budget under the Akufo-Addo administration has always had ‘holes’ in it.

“I have accused the Finance Minister several times that he is doing creative accounting, because there is a huge liability numbers that he will never add to the budget. He puts them as appendixes but when you add them to the budget he says I have 4.5% deficit when you add them to the budget you find out that he is close to a 7.58% budget deficit. So there has always been a hole in the budget if they tell you that it is Covid and Ukraine that has brought us to this situation, it is a bloody lie,” Mr Mahama said.

He explained further that the cost of the banking sector clean-up and the energy sector liability makes up the ‘hole’ in the budget.

“The fundamentals were already shaking, so you can do all the propaganda you want with the fundamentals, you know Covid will expose you”, he added.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Source: myjoyonline

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