The Minority in Parliament led by their leader, Cassiel Ato Forson, has expressed disgust over President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo's State of the Nation Address which he delivered today on the floor of Parliament.
Mentioning some good initiatives by his government to ameliorate the plight of the Ghanaian populace, the President debunked claims of financial mismanagement by his government.
Dispelling reports of misappropriation of the COVID-19 funds, the President told the House that nothing dishonorable was done with the COVID-19 funds by his government.
"Mr. Speaker, it is important to show clearly that the COVID-19 funds [COVID funds] were not misused. It is critical that we do not lose the confidence of the people that the crisis they were led to believe we were all in together was abused for personal gains.
"Mr. Speaker, it was government that asked for the COVID funds to be audited and I can assure this House that nothing dishonorable was done with the COVID funds. The responses from the Ministers for Health and Finance on January 23rd and 25th, 2023 respectively have sufficiently laid to rest the queries from the Auditor-General's report and I believe any objective scrutiny of these statements from the Health and Finance Ministries will justify this conclusion", he asserted.
On the education sector, the President stressed; "I think we are making progress. The strides we are making in education are already changing lives and changing the narrative. As at this year, nearly 2 million young people have benefited from the free SHS policy. Predictions that the policy will lead to a lowering of standards proved wide, very wide of the mark; on the contrary, the results under the free SHS has shown a systematic improvement. As a result, 2 million young people have either found a way to further education, training apprenticeships or employment because of the free SHS policy."
The President further touted many achievements by his government, disclosing some infrastructural developmental projects carried out under his administration.
But the Minority leader, seconding the motion for adjournment after President Nana Addo's speech, replied the President saying, "our economy is in tatters largely because it is self-inflicted. Your government inflicted it on us and failed to act".
He exclaimed that a large number of Ghanaians are disenchanted with the President.
"Mr. President, there is indeed a widespread of despair and disenchantment among our people. Millions of Ghanaians are going through unbearable hardships and excruciating pains. Our economy is in its worse shape in decades."
He slammed the Akufo-Addo administration over what he believes is the true state of the nation saying "Ghana's economy is bankrupt or insolvent . . . Mr. President, this is your score time and this is the true state of our nation".
"We are currently unable to repay our debts. Ghana has officially defaulted in the repayment of our debts since January 2022. Mr. Speaker, yet, Mr. President, your government is failing to cut down on the size of government and public expenditure. Ghana is witnessing hyper-inflation largely because, Mr. President, your government allowed the Bank of Ghana to print GHC 50 billion for the year 2022 and another GHC 4 billion in the year 2023, first quarter."
"Mr. President, let it be noted that the expenditure financed public expenditure on your overbloated government expenditure. Our position is that inflation is currently rising. Monetary policy rate is also at 28 percent. Ghana cedi has depreciated by 20% in January alone. Mr. President, unemployment is exceedingly high at the record levels and as we speak, Mr. President, lending rate is at 40 percent," he added.
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