The governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) has once again made a strong case for its ambitious policies and its large-sized government.
This latest justification comes in the wake of the recent call by the Institute of Statistical Social and Economic Research (ISSER) of the University of Ghana which urged government to review some of its expenditures in the face of a shortfall in domestic revenue.
But reacting to ISSER’s report , Deputy Information Minister, Pius Enam Hadzide insisted that the Nana Akufo-Addo government is still committed to improving the country’s socio-economic development through innovative interventions and with the supervision of key gatekeepers.
Government has over the past three years introduced several initiatives such as Free SHS, Nation Builders Corps, Planting for Food and Jobs among others in fulfilment of some campaign promises.
ISSER says the government needs to take a hard look at some of its expenditures following the decline in internally generated funds.
While these initiatives have proven to be popular, a Senior Research Fellow at ISSER, Dr. Charles Ackah believes that the government’s revenue position cannot sustain all these ambitious initiatives in the manner in which they are being implemented and that the government needs to review its spending as a number of the new initiatives don’t add to growth.
In its review of the 2019 mid-year budget, Dr. Ackah who is also Director at Center for Social Policy Studies at the University of Ghana, said Ghana’s economy, projected to grow at 6 percent, is on the decline from a high of 8.1 percent in 2017.
Last year, the economy could only grow at 6 percent. With the government missing its first-half revenue target by GHS5 billion, Dr. Ackah stated that it is time to reprioritize its spending as more borrowing could lead to more interest payments.
This year alone, the government is projecting to pay as much as GHS19 billion in interest payments on its borrowings.