General News of Saturday, 5 December 2015
Claims by the two main political parties of having the keys to unlock Ghana’s economic success, don’t seem to be reasonable for financial analyst and the Editor-In-Chief of the Financial Post Newspaper, Toma Imihere.
The Vice Presidential candidate of the New Patriotic Party, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, at a press conference to respond to government’s 2016 budget, chastised the incumbent National Democratic Congress (NDC) for what he referred to as their incompetently managing the economy. Ghana is saddled with a total debt stock of GHc94.5 billion, representing 70% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
The Finance Minister Seth Terkper told Parliament recently that the Cedi has so far depreciated by about 14% against the major trading currencies this year.
These developments according to Mr Imihere, have largely affected the general growth of the economy.
The Finance Minister believes the country is doing better now as 2015 growth rate will hit 4.1% by the end of December, compared to the projected 3.5%
However speaking on Citi FM’s news analysis programme, The Big Issue, he insisted that the challenges go beyond the ability of both parties’ plan to solve the recurring economic troubles overnight and that they must think about the long term.
“Quite frankly, I am not very optimistic about either side, about NDC or NPP…Neither NDC nor NPP can solve this problem overnight. We are in a dark place and we have to accept that. Do you think Seth Terkper and Kwesi Amissah Arthur don’t know the problems they have created? You think they are not aware? They know the problems they have created, they know how it has come about, but the problem is solving it,” he argued.
He added that “there is no quick fix to the problem that this government has put us in. There is no quick fix either from this government or from the NPP. Bawumia sits down and talks as if he has all the solutions, he doesn’t. There are no quick fixes to where we are now.” he argued.
He further posited that the economy is in a deep mess as 25% of the budget will be used to finance only interest payments.
This he said is not good for the country’s economic growth.