“The Finance Minister is not fit for purpose. I have told you that he is one of Ghana’s biggest problems. If you put your ears on the ground, people are blaming him. I think because he is related to the president, the president does not have the balls to sack him.”
“Just in February of March, at one of the town hall meetings, he [the Finance Minister] was saying that we are a proud people and that we would not go to the IMF. Some members of the EMT had also made this public [government defiant initial resistance at the IMF].”
These are the thought of Economist and Financial Policy Analyst, Dominic Anarigide. He said this when he spoke on A1 Radio’s Day Break Upper East Show today, July 4, 2022.
He was speaking on the government’s rather shocking u-turn and decision to begin formal engagements with the IMF for a possible bailout.
Mr. Anarigide explained that it may serve the government and the country well for the President to muster courage and dismiss the failed Finance Minister Ken Ofori Atta.
The Economist explained that following many distasteful comments by members of the government, including the finance Minister himself, about the work of the IMF, it may be improper for the same individuals to be the ones to negotiate fair terms for Ghana’s engagement with the Fund.
“These are the people who said we are not going to IMF. You are allowing these same people to lead the group. The IMF, they are in the system. They know what is going on. So assuming that you go and they ask you that you initially said you would not come, so what are you doing here, what would you say?”
“With these same people in charge, if the IMF wants to be principled, we will have a very tough time reaching a deal,” he said.
Amid protests over spiralling prices and the rising cost of living, the government of Ghanaian President Nana Akufo-Addo has reneged on its pledge not to borrow from the IMF after hitting the wall with its domestic economic recovery plan.
On 1 July President Akufo-Addo announced that he has instructed Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta to open negotiations for a programme.
“The engagements with the IMF will seek to provide a balance of payment as part of a broader effort to quicken Ghana’s build back in the face of challenges induced by the Covid-19 pandemic and, recently, the Russia-Ukraine crises,” a government statement said.
Until now, the government had ruled out the option of an IMF programme, settling for a homegrown economic recovery plan that included the introduction of a 1.5% tax on electronic financial transactions (E-levy) which sparked widespread protests.
Source: A1radioonline.com|101.1MHz|Mark Kwasi Ahumah Smith|Ghana