Minority’s claims on stabilization fund ‘ridiculous and inaccurate’ – Govt

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The Deputy Minister further explained that the Ministry of Finance wrote to the Controller and Accountant-General to instruct Bank of Ghana to use the equivalent of GHÈ»50 million of the excess amount to set up the Contingency Fund- a fund meant to cater for urgent or unforeseen expenditure – as proposed in the 2014 Budget, and transfer the rest into the Debt Service Account for debt repayment.

Mr. Ato Forson therefore described as “ridiculous” and “inaccurate” the claims being made by the Minority.

He also challenged the Minority to check with the Bank of Ghana if the amount transferred from the GSF is not in the Contingency Fund and Debt Service Account.

He insisted that government has not violated any law as the Minority claimed. The government would only go to Parliament for approval when it wants to utilize those accounts, he stated.

Ato Forson maintained that Contingency Fund and Debt Service Account were approved by Parliament, as captured in column 3647 of the Official Report of Parliament (The Hansard, Fourth Series, Vol.84, No.31) on Tuesday, 17th December, 2013.

But Deputy Minority Leader, Dominic Nitiwul was not convinced by his explanation.

He emphatically stated that government cannot establish the contingency fund through a budget: this would only be possible if the Petroleum Revenue Management Act is amended.

He said Parliament is still waiting for a proposal on the Contingency Fund, and insisted that there no such contingency fund.

He therefore insisted that the Minority’s checks at the Bank of Ghana revealed that the US$177 million has been withdrawn by government but what it was used for is still not clear.

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