Minority challenges gov’t to provide list of NDC loans

Rising public debt stock: Minority challenges gov’t  to provide list of NDC loans
Cassiel Ato Forson

The Minority in parliament has challenged the government to release the list of loans taken by the Mahama government which has increased the public debt stock.

According to the Ranking Member on the Finance Committee, Cassiel Ato Forson, the government cannot blame the Mahama administration for the rising debt stock when the records show that it has incurred fresh debt.

Briefing the media today [Tuesday], Cassiel Ato Forson said the president must account to Ghanaians for the close to Ghc 80 billion.

“The Information Minister also claimed that the public debt had shot up because of loans contracted by the NDC government which are currently being disbursed.  In person, we challenge him to produce the list of all such loans and show clearly how much has been disbursed. The government cannot eat its cake and have it by obviously taking credit for the project and disown the loans. This is not acceptable, it should be humble to give credit to Former President Mahama and we wish to state that information we have provided that they have borrowed so far – are new loans and has nothing to do with disbursement.”

“Another often trumpeted claim monies borrowed have been used to pay debt by the NDC. This claim is most misleading and has been deliberately couched to throw dust into the eyes of the unsuspecting members of the public. The reality is that, monies borrowed to replace shorter dated maturity debt do not have any interest on the public debt figures because there is no net increase”, he noted.

Background

Recent data released by the Bank of Ghana (BoG) has shown that the country’s total debt stock increased by Ghc 21. 4 billion in the first quarter of this year.

This means that Ghana added Ghc 21.4 billion to its debt stock between January and March this year.

According to the data, Ghana’s total debt now stands at Ghc 198 billion from Ghc 176 billion in January.

This situation according to the Minority is because Akufo-Addo’s government had increased Ghana’s debt stock by Ghc 80 billion and used the money on consumption, instead of capital expenditure or infrastructural development.

But the government has discounted the Minority’s claims insisting that those assertions were borne out of mischief and lack of understanding of the preparation of the national account.

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