General News of Friday, 4 August 2017
The Nana Addo led administration has borrowed an amount of $48M to help fulfill his promise of making Ghana’s capital the cleanest city in Africa.
The amount was approved by Parliament on Wednesday, August 2, 2017, and the money is expected to be used for the Greater Accra Sustainable Sanitation and Livelihoods Improvement Project.
Explaining the rationale behind the borrowing, Deputy Finance Minister, Abena Osei Asare said the benefit far outweighs the cost and also government holds the health of residents in high esteem hence the decision to borrow.
She told parliament: “Mr Speaker, there is no country in this world that does not borrow. What we were speaking against was the reckless borrowing by the previous government. We are not against borrowing. We will only borrow for projects that can pay for itself or we borrow for a social project where the benefit far outweighs the cost – like this one. This is to improve sanitation in Greater Accra. Year-on-year, there is an outbreak of cholera and we want to change some of these things; that is why we feel, for this loan, the social benefit will far outweigh the cost. We value human life, so we feel we should improve sanitation in Greater Accra.”
But Ho Central MP Benjamin Kpodo, had a different stance and said the Minister is misleading the house. “Mr Speaker, I have noticed that our honourable Deputy Minister is leading us in the wrong direction. If she is saying that the previous government has borrowed excessively and recklessly and she has come to inherit it, what she should do to bring the debt down is to pay back but she is rather borrowing.”
The Minority MPs criticised the government strong desire for borrowing. They, however, praised the president’s ambition to leave behind a clean city.