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The Parliament of Ghana has made it clear to the government that there will be no monies approved to be used on any Covid-19 programme unless the Finance Ministry accounts for what has been already used.
On Thursday, May 26, 2022, the chairman of the Finance Committee of Parliament moved a motion for a loan facility of 75 million from the European Investment Bank by the Government of Ghana for another COVID-19 Response programme.
Taking a cue from the displeasure expressed by members of the committee and members of Parliament, Speaker Alban Bagbin stressed that no approval will be given.
He said the Finance Ministry must first account for money approved for Covid expenses in the last two years before any additional funds will be approved.
“I see that there is the unwillingness of members to go with the committee until the monies that have been expended on covid-19 are accounted for.
“First, account for what has been given to you before we go ahead to approve any cheap money,” Speaker Alban Bagbin said.
The Speaker added, “We are not happy and we will not support government to go in for domestic loan because it will be more expensive. We are prepared to help the government go in for such cheap money but could you kindly tell us how you have used what has already been approved.”
According to him, Parliament is not against approving money for the government but only wants to make sure every penny spent by the Finance Ministry is properly accounted for.
Hon. Alban Bagbin while addressing Parliament summoned the Finance Minister to appear before the house to account for all funds approved to cover Covid-19 expenses in the midst of the pandemic.
“The Ministry of Finance must give an account of all the monies that it has gotten for the management of COVID-19. Only after that will this house consider approving or otherwise another loan.”
“I direct that the Minister of Finance appears before this House to account for all the monies that were approved for the utilization of the covid pandemic. It’s only then and only after that this motion will have an expression in this House to be approved or otherwise,” the Speaker directed.