President failed to accept blame for economic woes — Minority
The Minority Leader in Parliament, Haruna Iddrisu, has criticised the President for failing to accept responsibility for the “sorry and wrenched” state of the Ghanaian when he delivered his address on the state of the economy last Sunday.
Mr Iddrisu said President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo stopped short of admitting that he was responsible for the bad economic decisions that had impacted harshly livelihoods, exacerbated poverty and increased the cost of living.
“Today, the cost of doing business is high and many businesses are folding up and some industries are now re-routing their investments into neighbouring Ivory Coast and other countries because Ghana is no longer the investment haven as it should be,” he said.
Addressing a press conference in Parliament yesterday, Mr Iddrisu said: “The President stated categorically that there had been borrowing in the last 50 years but what he failed to add is that he borrowed more than any other head of state and President in the last 50 years.
The President delivered an address on the state of the economy, especially the rising cost of living, depreciation of the cedi, rising inflation and the measures adopted to revive the economy.
But reacting to the President’s address, the Minority recalled that few months ago the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank categorically said they did not see anything wrong with Ghana government’s economic policies.
“We now state that there is everything wrong with the Nana Akufo-Addo government and his economic management team’s policy on borrowing,” he quoted the two institutions as saying.
Mr Iddrisu noted that borrowing had been a major policy of the current administration, which decided how much it borrowed and where it directed the borrowing as an investment.
“So, if you now borrow to the level of debt distress, to the level of unsustainable debt and to the level of ratio of 105 per cent of GDP as your debt level and then he (the President) added that he hopes that Ghana’s debt to GDP would improve to 55 per cent of GDP by 2028, we ask the question: Where will he be.
“We are not convinced that he can even manage this with any superior strategy as was done by John Dramani Mahama and the National Democratic Congress,” he said.
Expect ‘haircut’ on investments
Recalling also the President’s message on the state of the nation in January 2017, Mr Iddrisu cited the President describing as colossal the GH₵120 billion debt of the country at the time as against the current GH¢450 billion.
He added that President Akufo-Addo, in his attempt to rebut President Mahama and the Ranking Member on the Finance Committee on Debt Management and Sustainability, dismissed the argument of a possible “hair cut” on investments.