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Investigate withdrawal of monies from the Consolidated Fund – MP

By
Christopher Arko, GNA

Accra, Aug. 9, GNA – Mr Kennedy Kankam, the
Member of Parliament for Nhyiaeso, has called for investigations into
circumstances leading to the withdrawal of GH¢896,457.00 from the Consolidated
Fund which were pay-cuts of Former President Mahama’s appointees without
recourse to the law.

He said nobody could withdraw money from the
Consolidated Fund without invoking Article 178 of the Constitution.

Mr Kankam made the call when he spoke to the
media after the sitting of the Public Account Committee (PAC) in Parliament.

The PAC is currently holding a public hearing
on the Report of the Auditor General for the Public Accounts of Ghana for the
year ended 31st December, 2015.

In November 2013, Mr Seth Terkper, then the
Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, announced in the Government’s Budget
that President John Mahama and his Vice, Paa Kwesi Amissah-Arthur, as well as
all ministers of state were to make a voluntary 10 per cent pay cut.

According to him the decision was to
demonstrate leadership on the part of the President and his appointees.

The move, he said, was among the many
austerity measures being introduced to help save Ghana’s ailing economy.

Besides, the monies realised from the pay cut
would be used to construct Community-Based Health Planning Services (CHPS)
compounds to provide maternal and neo-natal health care services to rural
communities.

Mr Kankam said whoever took the money from the
Consolidated Fund must come to Parliament to account to the people.

He said in the 2014 financial year, GH¢896,457.00
was realised from the voluntary 10 per cent pay cut, however the contributions
for 2015 was zero.

He said his main concern was about the one who
took the money from the Fund without due regard to the law.

Mrs Abena Osei Asare, the Deputy Minister of
Finance, said the freeze on public sector employment was still on until the
country completed the International Monetary Fund programme in December 2018.

She explained that though the ministries of
Education and Health could still employ people, they must seek financial
clearance from the Ministry of Finance to ensure that when they engaged the
people they would be able to pay them.

She said the Government did not want to
encourage budget overruns and, as such, there was the need to seek the
financial clearance.

Mrs Osei Asare gave the assurance that
government was working with the Controller and Accountant General to recover
the loans owed the state by both government and private institutions.

She said when the current government came into
office it realised that 540 institutions owed about GH¢1 billion in loans.

She said the Ministry of Finance had set up a
dedicated desk for the recovery of the loans.

Mrs Osei Asare advised workers who had not
registered with the SSNIT biometric system to endeavour to do so.  

She said workers who for one reason or the
other were wrongly deleted from the Controller and Accountant General
Department payroll should go back to re-register to be restored onto the
payroll.

GNA

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