2014 budget targets not met – MPs


Deputy Minority Spokesperson on Finance, Dr. Mark Osei-Asibey has ranked government’s performance ‘D’ for failing to meet targets set in the 2014 budget. According to him, government failed to meet the target set in the 2014 budget hence the grade.

“What we see is that government is still in arrears, school feeding contractors are not being paid, health insurance is bleeding, GETFUND is in arrears all our road projects the major ones are in limbo so I will give government a D on 2014,” he told Citi News Richard Dela Sky in an interview.

Dr. Osei-Asibey who is also the New Juabeng South Member of Parliament (MP) argued that “the government sought to rationalize expenditures, we haven’t seen that, it sought to mobilize revenue, we haven’t seen that, it sought to streamline wages we haven’t seen that, there were proposed structural reforms, we haven’t seen all of that and government is still in arrears.”

“It can’t do the needed investment it seeks to do, the gas infrastructure project has not come fully onboard. The western corridor roads have stalled because the CDB loan has not come in. so in effect the things government proposes to do in 2014 it has not been able to do,” he added.

However, the Minister of Finance, Seth Terkper is expected to present the 2015 budget to the 275-member Legislature on Wednesday.

It is expected that government will announce some major austerity measures for 2015 following demands from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Meanwhile, a team from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Tuesday met members of the Finance Committee of Parliament for discussions on efforts towards saving the struggling Ghanaian economy.

Dr. Osei-Asibey who was part of the meeting said they discussed “the profile of our debts, the deficit situation, issues to deal with the statistical service, the calculations whether all parties agree to how these numbers are being churned up. What I picked up, it is not likely that the programme with the fund will start anytime soon. Negotiations have not ended, they are going back tomorrow, they don’t come back until sometime in February.” He said the budget which will be presented on Wednesday has no input from the IMF.

“If there is going to be a programme it will start in May of next year. The budget being presented tomorrow has no input from the IMF it’s our own homegrown budget. If the IMF comes on board and with their recommendations….it’s most likely we would have to get a revised budget that incorporates all of the prescription from the IMF,” he explained.

source : citifmonline.com