GSS vindicates Bawumia; admits GDP errors

Dr Mahamudu Bawumia.

Dr Mahamudu Bawumia.

The Ghana Statistical Service (GSS) has admitted there were errors in a recent data about the country’s economic growth posted on its website.

‘GSS wishes to state that there was error during the transmission of the data unto its website. The correct figure is 4.8 percent and not the 2.2 percent which has subsequently been identified and corrected.

‘The institute for fiscal studies raised similar concern in January 2015 and they were provided with the above information and the correct figure. It may interest the public to note that the 2009 GDP growth rate of 4.8 percent was the figure provided to the IMF in January 2015,’ the GSS clarified in a statement Thursday.

The reaction follows the casting of doubts over the credibility of the data presented to the IMF by the government by the 2016 running mate of the New Patriotic Party Dr Mahamudu Bawumia.

According to the former Deputy Governor of the Bank of Ghana, there are inconsistencies with the two main sets of data based on which the programme is fashioned – inflation and the GDP.

Dr. Bawumia made the disclosure while speaking on the topic: ‘The IMF Bailout, Will the Anchor Hold’ at a public lecture organised by the Central University College as part of their ‘Distinguished Speaker Series’.

‘Mr. Chairman any economic and financial programme is only as good as the data used to formulate the programme. Credible data provides the basis of the analytical framework to respond adequately to economic challenges. If you have make-believe data you will end up with counterproductive or inadequate responses to economic policies. If your data is not credible, the anchor cannot hold. With make-believe data as the basis, the best you can achieve is make-believe results which will soon be exposed as we are witnessing currently,’ he said.

Dr. Bawumia explained that the inflation data on which the programme was drafted had question marks on it.

‘Mr. Chairman, the data on inflation produced by the [Ghana Statistical Service] GSS does not appear to reflect actual price developments. I have raised this issue before and I have returned to it today with further and better particulars. The year 2014 was a very bad one as far as the economy is concerned.

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