The Mills administration has borrowed about ˘231 trillion in just a little over three years, the Member of Parliament (MP) for Sunyani West, Ignatius Baffour Awuah has said.
Hon Awuah, who disclosed this on the floor of Parliament recently, said government increased Ghana’s debt stock from $8.1 billion or ˘91 trillion in 2008 to $32.2 billion or ˘322 trillion in three years.
The gargantuan debt, he indicated, included the $3 billion Chinese loan, $1.5 billion STX Housing loan, which senior government officials say would still come on and $600 million for the University of Ghana, Legon.
Contributing to the debate on President Mills’ State of the Nation address, Mr. Baffour Awuah, who is also the deputy ranking member on the Finance Committee of Parliament, pointed out that if the colossal amount were to be divided among the over 24 million Ghanaians, each person including those born, would be paid an amount of ˘13.2 million.
He noted that even though government had borrowed more money than its predecessors, there was very little to show for it as growth in all sectors of the economy was declining to worsen the plight of the people.
Obviously rubbishing claims by Fiifi Kwetey, Deputy Minister for Finance & Economic Planning during the ‘NDC forum for setting the records straight,’ that the economy has grown under Mills, Mr. Baffour Awuah said the various sectors performed abysmally.
Starting with the agricultural sector, which employees many Ghanaians, the Sunyani West MP indicated the Mills administration has recorded a growth rate of 7.4 percent recorded by NPP in 2008.
“In 2009, government recorded growth of 7.2 percent, 5.2 percent in 2010 and 2.8 percent in 2011”, he disclosed.
“If it is the sector that employs a lot of Ghanaians and it is the sector which is dying under NDC, then Ghanaians should be worried because many of them would be out of business should NDC continue to be in office,” Mr. Baffour Awuah cautioned.
He said the manufacturing sector, which also absorbs a chunk of the working population, grew marginally at 1.7 percent as against the projected target of 7.0 percent; Hotels and Restaurants sector also experience a negative growth of -11 percent as against a projection of 13.5 percent.
Furthermore, Mr. Baffour Awuah said the fishery sector performed abysmally, growing by 1.7 percent against a projected figure of 5.6 percent whilst the Forestry sector recorded -14.5 percent growth rate.
Presenting the State of the Nation address, President Mills indicated that his administration had achieved a growth rate of about 14.5 percent in 2011 to enhance the economy.
However, Mr. Baffour Awuah said but for the oil discovered by the Kufuor administration, Ghana’s economy would have been in a sorry state under the leadership of President Mills.
He revealed that the growth rate was oil-induced, pointing out that if the oil sector was to be taken out, the real GDP growth would have been 8.2 percent.
This, he noted, was below the 8.4 percent GDP the Kufuor-led administration registered in 2008, stressing, “NDC for three years has been struggling to reach where NPP left off but has not succeeded.”
Setting the records straight, Mr. Baffour Awuah revealed that in 2009, NDC recorded a growth of only 4.6 percent, a decline from the 2008 rate of 8.4 percent, 7.7 percent in 2010 and ended 2011 with 8.2 percent, excluding oil.
He entreated the Mills administration to grow all the sectors for the development of the country and not depend solely on oil to solve challenges confronting the nation.
Source: Daily Guide
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