|The Government of Ghana does not have money to pay salaries of its workers across the country for September 2016; and has therefore, decided to use part of the budget already allocated to run some 23 Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).
The financial situation has reached crisis point and government, in an apparent panic reaction, DAILY GUIDE has learnt, has officially decided to take about GH¢500 million from these agencies, which are also cash-strapped.
In a letter dated August 24, 2016 and sighted by DAILY GUIDE, the government, through the Controller and Accountant General, has authorized the Bank of Ghana (BoG) to take a sum of GH¢469,176,900 from the 23 MDAs and transfer the money into the government’s Treasury Main Account at the Central Bank for salaries.
The letter stated clearly that the money should be transferred into an account Number 1018431499397 at the Central Bank and is meant “to facilitate the payment of salaries” to government workers.
Interestingly, money is being taken from oil revenue as well as agriculture to pay the salaries of workers.
An amount of GH¢200 million meant for contractors has been taken from the Ministry of Roads; seized an amount of GH¢20 million from the Judicial Service, ‘hijacked’ an amount of GH¢50 million from the budget of the GRA Petroleum Collection and different amounts of money from several other MDAs.
The situation has been attributed to inadequate tax income due to the bad economic situation in the country and the fact that government is using a chunk of the taxes collected to pay interest on loans it had acquired.
The affected MDAs include the Ministry of Roads and Highways Sub CF (GH¢200 million), Ghana Revenue Authority General Ref. (GH¢50 million), GRA Petroleum Collection (GH¢50 million), Government Machinery Sub CF (GH¢15 million), Judicial Service 15 percent retention (GH¢20 million), GRA Classification and Valuation (GH¢14 million), Ministry of Local Government Sub CF (GH¢10 million), KMA Sub CF (GH¢10 million), Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning (MOFEP) Divestiture Proceeds (GH¢20,176,900), Ministry of Works and Housing Sub CF (GH¢5 million), and Administrator General’s Department (GH¢10 million).
The rest are Ministry of Agriculture Sub CF (GH¢5 million), Fuel Marking Account (GH¢5 million), Chief Director Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development (GH¢5 million), Special Fiscal Progs. and Payments (GH¢5 million), GRA Tax Development Account (GHc5 million), Ghana Immigration Service (GH¢5 million), GOG National Electrification Fund (GH¢5 million), Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MOFA) OVCF Cedi Account (GH¢5 million), CIDA-MOFEP-FDA-AGRIC Budget (GH¢5 million), Joint Book Runners Transit Account (GH¢5 million) and Office of Parliament PE (GH¢5 million)
Many have expressed displeasure about government’s decision to take funds from the accounts of the MDAs to pay salaries, especially when most of them are underfunded.
According to the critics, the MDAs are already in dire need of money to run their affairs, and so government’s decision to eat into their funds will affect their operations and make them bankrupt.