The Member of Parliament (MP) for Kade in the Eastern Region, who is also the former Deputy Eastern Regional Minister under the erstwhile Kufuor administration, Ofosu Asamoah has waded into the debate over the devaluation of the cedi.
Hon Ofosu Asamoah made this known at Kade, the capital of the Kwaebibirim District during the commissioning of a new building for the Kade branch of the Akim Bosome Rural Bank.
Vice President Paa Kwesi Amissah-Arthur recently said the devaluation of currencies used in the sub-region will help meet conditions that are crucial for adopting a single currency in ECOWAS zone by 2020.
The Vice President said this during the opening of the 35th Meeting of the Convergence Council of the West African Monetary Zone in Accra.
He said the vision to establish a single currency in the ECOWAS zone would be a mirage if member countries do not innovate and confront dogmatic thinking.
But the Kade MP told journalists that the Ghana cedi naturally depreciates against major foreign currencies which makes life difficult for the citizenry.
“Our economy is an import-based one and we import everything and the dollar is the common denominator for trade in the international market, so devaluing the cedi will mean spending more cedis for fewer dollars and that will raise the cost,” he said.
“Will they increase the salaries of workers to meet the cost of living in the country when we devalue the cedi?” he quizzed.
“Industries in the country also import everything so this decision will affect both industry and individual spending,” he added.
The outspoken MP said it will be good to help the sub-region get the convergence point for a common currency.
“But we can’t think about the region now when our people are suffering. You look at the interest of the ultimate beneficiaries who are the citizens of Ghana before we go and think about West Africa,” he added.
The Akim Bosome Rural Bank, established on 3rd October, 1983, operates in five districts and Municipal assemblies in the Eastern Region and offers various banking services.
The Board Chairman of the bank, George Kumi–Brobbey said the building, which is spacious than the previous one, will enhance the activities of the bank in Kade and the Kwaebibirem District in general.
Many experts have expressed various views about the devaluation of the cedi.
A former Deputy Governor of the Bank of Ghana (BoG), Emmanuel Asiedu Mante rejected the calls for the devaluation of the cedi, saying the majority of the companies in import sector could collapse if Ghana goes ahead to devalue the cedi.
Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Dalex finance, Ken Thompson, for his part, has backed the call by the vice president, saying if companies in the import sector collapse after the devaluation of the currency, Ghana will benefit in the long-term.
BY Daniel Bampoe