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Akufo-Addo Government Spends ¢125m On Judgment Debts, Surpassing Mahama By ¢56m

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Akufo-Addo Government Spends ¢125m On Judgment Debts, Surpassing Mahama By ¢56m

“Not just Woyome. You look at Waterville, it is the same pattern. You look at the others, you can see a similar pattern. It cannot be inefficiency.

Kweku (Baako) decides to call it recklessness. It cannot be recklessness. It is deliberate, it goes beyond people being reckless.”

The words of the NPP’s Nana Akomea on Newsfile on the JoyNews on August 2, 2014.

This was a time the NDC’s John Mahama-led government had come under intense pressure to retrieve some ¢51.2 million judgement debt from businessman Alfred Woyome.

A host of other judgment debt payments had equally become the subject of heated public discussions.

It, therefore, came as no surprise that the subject found expression in the NPP’s 2016 Manifesto. Page 134, point (f) provided as follows;

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“(f) payments of dubious judgment debts and questionable settlements.”

This was under the broad theme of “Current state of Public Accountability”. The Party promised as follows:

“The NPP will fight corruption head-on through preventive, detective, corrective and punitive actions. Our anti-corruption policy will be based on three key pillars: institutional reform, legislative reform, and attitudinal change/public education.”

Akufo-Addo government spends ¢125m on judgment debts, surpassing Mahama by ¢56m

The NPP has since taken over Government and JoyNews has been tracking the thorny issue of judgment debts.

A Right to Information request was first sent to the Office of the Attorney General and Minister of Justice.

The Office responded that the appropriate place to obtain this information is the Finance Ministry.

A subsequent request was therefore sent to the Finance Ministry where the Information was provided.

The Information reveals that Government has since 2017 paid Judgment debts totalling ¢125 million.

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The Highest Judgment debt was paid in 2018. An amount of 30.9 million cedis was paid to Jubilee Tractors and Assembly Plant Limited. This arose from a case filed against the National Security Council. In 2017, an amount of 29.5 million cedis was paid to NDK Financial Services.

A close comparison of the various years shows that the highest amount paid since the NPP took over government was in 2017 when payments totalled ¢54 million.

A 2021 research published by the Centre for Social Justice shows that this ¢125 million figure compares nowhere near the whopping ¢356.6 million debt paid by the NDC administration in 2010.

Akufo-Addo government spends ¢125m on judgment debts, surpassing Mahama by ¢56m

It, however, ranks higher when what was paid in the first 4 years of the John Mahama Administration is compared to the first 4 years of the Akufo-Addo administration.

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A total judgment debt of ¢69.9 million was paid by the NDC administration between 2013 and 2016.

Akufo-Addo government spends ¢125m on judgment debts, surpassing Mahama by ¢56m

President Akufo-Addo’s government between 2017 and 2020 paid 120 of 125 million cedis in total judgment debt.

Akufo-Addo government spends ¢125m on judgment debts, surpassing Mahama by ¢56m

So far, ¢2.8 million in judgment debt has been paid by government in the year 2022.

Source: www.GhanaCNN.com

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Bawumia Launches Employable Skills Programme To Benefit Young People In Ahafo  

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Bawumia Launches Employable Skills Programme To Benefit Young People In Ahafo

The Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia on Wednesday launched a youth development employable skills programme that seeks to create jobs for more than 1,200 young people in the Ahafo Region.

Dubbed “Promoting Youth Employment through Employable Skills Training and Entrepreneurship”, the Newmont Ghana Gold Limited (NGGL) and the German Development Cooperation (GIZ) are sponsoring the programme.

The beneficiaries would be engaged in welding and fabrication, barbering, fashion design, hair dressing and dressmaking, bakery, masonry, wood technology, vulcanizing, general spraying and auto mechanics.

Speaking at the ceremony held at Goaso, the Ahafo Regional capital, Dr. Bawumia said about 72 per cent of the nation’s population were young people below 35 years, and thus commended the Ahafo Regional Coordinating Council for the initiative.

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The Vice President noted “this is the first regional-led youth employment and skills training initiative in the country” and promised the government’s support for the programme to yield positive outcomes.

Dr. Bawumia, therefore, stressed the government’s commitment to transform Technical and Vocational Education Training (TVET) to make the sector more attractive for the youth.

Mr George Yaw Boakye, the Ahafo Regional Minister, said the programme’s implementation would well position the beneficiaries to create jobs for themselves to reduce youth unemployment in the region.

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“This would also economically empower young people and help to end the issues of illegal mining and logging in the region,” he added.

Mr Boakye said the Management of NGGL had set aside GhC1 million for the procurement of training equipment and start up tools, and applauded the company for that assistance.

He said an amount of GhC25,000 has been set aside for each of the six politically-administrative districts and municipalities for the implementation of the programme.

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Nana Kwasi Bosompra I, the Paramount Chief of Goaso Traditional Area, advised the youth to develop interest in employable skill training and avail themselves to benefit from the programme.

Source: www.GhanaCNN.com

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2023 Budget: Minority Vows to Resist 2.5% Increment In VAT

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2023 Budget: Minority Vows to Resist 2.5% Increment In VAT

The Minority in Parliament has vowed to resist any attempt by the government to revise the rate of Value Added Tax (VAT) upwards in the 2023 budget.

Government has given an indication VAT rate will be increased from the current 17.5% to 20%.

Speaking to the media in parliament, MP for Asuogyaman, Thomas Ampem Nyarko argued such a move will further exacerbate the current hardship in the country.

The NDC MPs rather want the government to cut down expenditure especially from the presidency vault.

“In fact the information we are picking up doesn’t look good for our dear country. The budget that is due to be read tomorrow promises to be a budget full of taxes. What we are hearing is that this government intends to increase VAT by 2.8 percent. They intend to increase income taxes and they intend to remove a lot of exemptions to Mobile Money (MoMo). So even merchants are going to be subjected to taxes.

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“We have known this government to be insensitive but we never knew that their level of insensitivity would be this high. Because in this time of serious hardship in this country with inflation so high none of us expected that they would be increasing taxes to this level,” the Member of the Finance Committee stated.

He continued: “Our (Minority) posture is that we are willing to support the government in these difficult times. Because they need help if we don’t help this economy will crash. However, the government must come clear to show they are going to reduce expenditure drastically.”

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The Vice Chairman for the Finance Committee, Patrick Yaw Boamah on his part expects that the budget will address the debts unsustainability challenge and offer hope to Ghanaians.

“I pray that the Minister presents a good budget to give Ghanaians the hope for debt sustainability, to ease the economic hardship. To bring a program in collaboration with the Central Bank towards the standardization of our currency.

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“Ghanaians need hope from the budget, that is all what Ghanaians need,” the Member of Parliament for Okaikoi Central reiterated.

Source: www.GhanaCNN.com

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Nobody Has The Right To Be A Minister; Ofori-Atta Must Go – ACEP Director

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Nobody Has The Right To Be A Minister; Ofori-Atta Must Go – ACEP Director

The Executive Director for Africa Centre for Energy Policy (ACEP) has added his voice to calls for the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta to resign.

Speaking in an interview on JoyNews’ The Probe, Mr Benjamin Boakye stated that being a minister is not a constitutional right therefore if people are calling for his resignation, he should go.

“When you have 85% of the people’s representative saying that they have lost confidence in you, they do not want you, I do not think that anybody has the right to be a minister – there is no constitutional right to be a minister for which anybody can defend,” he said.
This comes after the Finance Minister appeared before the 8-member Adhoc Committee of Parliament hearing a motion of censure against him by the Minority to defend himself.

According to Mr Boakye, there is no need for Mr Ofori-Atta to defend himself.

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“This is an unnecessary addition to what we need to do at this point in terms of what we need to do to recover,” he said.

“It is the constitutional process of people voting and the will of the people that say that he has to go at this point. We are told that 85% of his people in his own camp says he should go and the entire Minority, put that together, it is an overwhelming number,” he added.

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He stressed that the Finance Minister must resign.

Mr. Boakye added that “considering the difficulty that Ghanaians are in, we have to clear the air and give confidence to the market and people who want to deal with Ghana for us to come out of the difficulty.”

Source: www.GhanaCNN.com

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