Senchi Report Indicts Gov’t
Akua Donkor and other participants at the Senchi Forum
THE ‘SENCHI Report’, a product of the recent National Economic Forum held in Senchi in the Eastern Region, has indicted the John Dramani Mahama-led National Democratic Congress (NDC) for its unbridled spending and virtual loss of credibility with public finances.
According to the group of key stakeholders who were whisked to Senchi from May 13 to 15 this year, the Mahama administration’s excessive spending has undermined its supposed commitment to ending the dire economic difficulties facing the country.
‘Excessive spending in relation to the political cycle has undermined confidence in the commitment to macroeconomic discipline and stability,’ stated aspects of the ‘Senchi Consensus’ which was released last week.
‘Budget outcomes have deviated significantly from forecasts and therefore have tended to be perceived as not dependable. Mid-year reviews have sometimes been used to introduce new policies rather than for an assessment of policies outlined in the budget,’ the report
According to critics, the government’s mishandling of the economy had resulted in astronomical fuel and utility price hikes,
tax increases, job losses, high unemployment rates, the current poor state of the National Health Insurance Scheme, rising inflation and the rapid depreciation of the cedi against major international currencies. The group of experts at Senchi noted in
the report that the structure of government’s spending was a major constraint on fiscal policy.
The report explained, for instance, that ‘In the 2013 budget, Government expenditure on two items-the wage bill and interest costs on the public debt -absorbed 57 percent and 25 percent, respectively, of total Government revenue, leaving only 18 percent for other budgetary items, including capital expenditure.’
This spending pattern has caused the Mahama administration to default on wiring a sum of GH
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