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Ghana: Press highlights x-ray of Ghana’s economy by Institute of Fiscal Studies, others

The warning by the Institute of Fiscal Studies that the Ghanaian economy is in a fiscal mess and the call on Ghanaians by the Ghana Catholic Bishops’ Conference to work consciously towards peace building are the trending stories in Ghanaian press on TuesdayThe Graphic reports that the Institute of Fiscal Studies (IFS) has warned that Ghana’s economy is in what it described as a fiscal mess which will require urgent measures to restructure.

It has, therefore, cautioned the government to be careful with its fiscal policy measures in the face of the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic in order not to worsen the situation.

Addressing the media on the fiscal position of the country, the Director at IFS, Dr. Said Boakye, said the country’s fiscal position was already in a very precarious state in 2019 even before COVID 19 struck.

He said there were clear signs that showed a country that was poised to struggle fiscally if even no disaster occurred.

The newspaper says that with about four months to the December 7 polls, the Ghana Catholic Bishops’ Conference (GCBC) has called on Ghanaians to work consciously towards peace building and abhor the acrimonious politics gaining currency in the country.

“As a nation, let us do everything in our power to maintain the enviable reputation we have so far established as one of Africa’s leading countries whose democratic development is a shining beacon for others to follow,” it said.

It said this was an opportune moment for Ghana to celebrate its success as an emerging democracy and also to reflect on how best to confront the inevitable socio-cultural and economic challenges that could pose a threat to peaceful and credible elections in December and to the country’s democracy in general.

This was contained in a pastoral letter to Ghanaians on the subject, “Politics for nation building and social cohesion in Ghana” and signed by the President of the GCBC, Most Rev. Philip Naameh.

It noted that for more than a quarter of a century, Ghana had become an island of peace and stability in West Africa, a region that had been threatened by terrorism, insurgence, armed conflict and socio-political instability.

The Times reports that President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, at a short ceremony at the Jubilee House in Accra yesterday, presented cash prizes to winners of the third season of the Presidential Pitch Programme and used the occasion to drum home the need for Ghanaian businesses to ensure that the country does not rely on the global supply chain for survival under post coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

While commending the winners of the event, the President said the COVID-19 pandemic had taught the world a lesson that if a nation was over reliant on the global supply chain, unexpected circumstances like a pandemic could significantly hurt its economy.

He cited an example with Ghana where certain markets faced challenges due to China’s decision to close its borders as a result of the pandemic and stressed the need for Ghanaians to aggressively pursue the goal of becoming a self-reliant country.

The Presidential Pitch Programme is an initiative of the Ministry of Business Development aimed at mentoring young entrepreneurs. The overall winner of this year’s event, Doglas Akologo, who was to receive GH¢70,000, ended up with a colossal of GH¢100,000.

The newspaper says that former President and flag bearer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Mr. John Mahama, has stated that his decision to seek re-election is to provide jobs for the teeming youth of the country.

“Youth unemployment is a major challenge in the country and if elected for a second term as president of Ghana, I will put in place significant plans and resources to address the phenomenon, in our country, we have a youth bulge and we are sitting on a youth time bomb.

“That is why my main thrust of seeking leadership again is on finding jobs for our young people and all those young people you see, the main concern and challenge they have is non-availability of jobs so my next administration intends to create more than one million jobs within four years,” Mahama said.

He indicated that the Mahama/Amissah-Arthur administration between 2012 and 2016 needed to focus on different priorities which was social and economic infrastructure development and made huge investments in infrastructure and in his next administration, everything would be geared towards creating jobs for the young people.

The Times also reports that the Minority in Parliament is demanding for what it calls “greater transparency and accountability in the management, supervision, and regulation of the collapsed financial institutions”.

According to the caucus, the processes surrounding the banking sector clean-up which involved nine universal banks and dozens of other financial institutions has been shrouded in opacity and secrecy.

Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu, addressing journalists in Parliament yesterday said their demands were borne out of the breaches of the Banks and Specialised Deposit Taking Institutions Act, 2016.

The Act mandates a receiver to establish a new financial position for the bank or specialised deposit taking institution based on a determination of liquidation values of the assets of the bank or specialised deposit taking institution.

Published on 28.04.2020

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