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Fiifi Kwetey Slams Bawumia Over $250m UBA Deposit Saga   
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Minister of Transport and Member of Parliament for the Ketu South Constituency, Fifi Kwetey, has expressed disappointment in what he calls Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia’s seeming lack of understanding of the Finance Ministry’s decision to invest $250 million of the proceeds from the nation’s $1 billion Eurobond into a private account at the United Bank of Africa (UBA).

According to the Ketu South MP, as a former Deputy Governor at the Bank of Ghana, Dr. Bawumia should understand that it was prudent for the Finance Minister, Seth Tekper, to invest in profitable ventures for and on behalf of the State.

Dr. Bawumia called for a parliamentary probe into allegations that Seth Terkper broke the law when he reportedly ordered the transfer of public funds amounting to some $250 million being proceeds from Ghana’s recent Eurobond to the UBA.

Dr. Bawumia claimed that UBA after receiving the cash later loaned out the funds back to the government in the form of treasury bills in a deal he claimed amounted to causing financial loss to the state.

He further called for the resignation of the Finance Minister over the transaction he described as reckless.

But in a Citi News interview, Fiifi Kwetey said Dr. Bawumia’s reaction to the issue was evidence of the New Patriotic Party’s desperation to win power in the upcoming general elections.

According to Mr. Kwettey, if Dr. Bawumia had taken time to understand Ghana’s infrastructure fund and the laws that regulated it, he would understand why the money meant for the infrastructure fund was invested.

“If he [Dr. Bawumia] had taken is time to understand the working of the Ghana infrastructure fund and the laws which regulated it, he clearly would have known that not one pesewa of any money that is meant for the infrastructure fund is meant to remain in some kind of idle account at the central bank earning nothing,” he explained.

Mr. Kwettey noted further that, the very aim of the infrastructure fund was to help the country leverage critical funding for economic infrastructure so any manager of such funds “should be looking for the highest possible returns.” “…So this actually shows that Dr. Bawumia out of political desperation is not doing himself a lot of good at all and that will not be the first time. This is almost becoming a serial activity [for him], Fiifi Kwettey concluded.

Gov’t didn’t err in $250m transfer to UBA

The newly appointed Governor of the Bank of Ghana, Dr. Abdul Nashir Issahaku, has dismissed equally allegations that the Ministry of Finance contravened section (53) of the BoG Act 612 when it transferred 250 million dollars of the 1 billion dollar Eurobond proceeds to a private account.

According to the Governor, government took the cedi equivalent of the amount hence, cannot be in contravention of the BoG law.

“I think from our stand point here, all government foreign exchange has to be in the custody of the Central Bank and when government need their money, they take the equivalent in cedis.

The 250 million dollars that was taken out of here, they did not take foreign exchange dollars, the dollars were surrendered to the Central Bank, it was sold to the Central Bank and the government took the equivalent of that in cedis to deposit it elsewhere. So by the Bank of Ghana act, we have been in compliance,” he explained..
Source: citifmonline.com

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