Ghana might face charges from International Monetary Fund (IMF) as the country’s economic figures seems fishy, says the new government. The new government, led by the Vice President had announced that the previous government – the National Democratic Party (NDC) has refused to account for a 7 billion Ghana Cedis which was spent during their term in government. However, the NDC government and the current minority in parliament, claims that the money was being used for an ongoing initiative on government contracts and expenditure which forms part of the Ghana Integrated Financial Management Information System. They furthered to express that it is of their expectation to see the current government continue that initiative.
Despite the claims by minority, the new government stands unconvinced and sees the act of the previous government as a vulnerability to being fined or punished by IMF for misrepresenting of the country’s financials. The statistics from the present government – New Patriotic Party demonstrate a budget deficit at 10 to 11 per cent of GDP with expenditures higher than revenues by 4 billion USD in 2016 alone. This fishy scenario creates doubts and questions, which could result in an unpleasant conclusion. According to Mark Yeboah, who is the Chairman of Parliament’s Finance Committee, the act could be traced back to 2014 where the previous government went into negotiations with the IMF. “On the face of the reality that the arrears date back to 2014, then it will suggest that when the previous administration entered into negotiations with the IMF, full disclosure of data was not made available to the fund,” he said. He continued that “on account that arrears for 2015 and 2016 were not fully disclosed, that raises further questions on the integrity of data that we have been churning out over the past eight years.”
Ghana had in the past received a 39 million USD fine from the IMF in 2001 following a similar circumstance where there were unrepresented loops in the submission of Ghana’s finance following a change of government.