Dr Anthony Akoto Osei
The Minority in Parliament is asking the government to pull the plug on the three billion dollar Chinese Development Bank(CDB) loan or re-negotiate terms which will favour the nation.
They made the call at a press conference on the state of the economy after the Senchi forum on Thursday.
Addressing the press, the Minority Spokesperson on Finance, Akoto Osei said the commitment fee of one percent does not favour Ghana thus the government either cancel the loan or re-negotiate it.
The CDB agreed to provide Ghana with a loan of $3 billion for a package of infrastructural projects.
The loan was signed by CDB and Ghana on December 16, 2011.
A total sum of US$ 3 billion is expected from CDB but as at January only $600 million of the loan had been disbursed although Ghana was paying commitment fees on the full amount.
‘Mr. President, it is only you who can make this request to the Chinese. We have thus far paid $54 million in commitment fees alone. And we continue to pay on the withdrawn balance’ he revealed.
Some economists have also called for the loan to be renegotiated since China has already demanded an additional 2,000 barrels of crude oil to the earlier 13,000 barrels a day agreed between them and government.
The Minority also added that Ghana will pay close $ 100 million as the loan stalls in fees and charges by end of 2014.
The NPP MPs also called for a debate on the newly introduced austerity measures.
‘Advocating for more austerity measures or restoring fiscal discipline requires hard choices for which sacrifices must be made by Ghanaians. The economic managers must therefore begin now to tell Ghanaians what options are available to us,’ Akoto Osei said.
He further indicated that arrears exist in the system for wages, statutory funds, payments on social security for government employees, payments to road and non-road contractors, adding that the amount of money owed these bodies have not been fully disclosed to Ghanaians.
Mr. Akoto Osei criticized the government for the country’s economic woes saying, ‘the recklessness, the impunity in the economic management since 2009, the corruption, the thievery, the ineptitude, the maladministration, the leakages, the placing of square pegs in round holes, the nomination of Ministers designate are the matters that have been combined to send this nation to such an abyss.’
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