Minister of Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah has assured Ghanaians that based on some corrective measures made by the Akufo-Addo led administration the 2019 budget will not be under the supervision of the International Monetary Fund(IMF).
The budget which will be the third in the Akufo-Addo administration will mark the beginning of Ghana’s exit from the IMF programme under which the government sought almost 918 million US dollars to overturn the country’s financial situation which was in crisis with some stringent conditions attached.
The actual amount was however released in various tranches.
IMF’s three primary functions were: to oversee the fixed exchange rate arrangements between countries, thus helping national governments manage their exchange rates and allowing these governments to prioritize economic growth, and to provide short-term capital to aid the balance of payments.
According to him the administration has in the first 2 years raced to correct slippages from set targets under the programme and their hope for a successful exit at the end of the year.
Briefing the press, Mr. Kojo Oppong Nkrumah who also stands in the stead of the people of the Ofoase Ayirebi constituency in the parliament of Ghana stated that the improved macroeconomic environment is evidenced by the reduced policy rate, reduced inflation rate, reduced fiscal deficit, improved growth, improved reserves, and improved credit ratings.
He further explained that the administration has also rolled out the biggest social spending activities ever in the history of this country which includes the Free SHS programme, expanded school feeding programme, and initiatives such as the planting for food and jobs.
“The 2019 budget is designed to bring more relief, hope, and improvement in the standard of living of our people; The Honorable Minister for Finance will demonstrate to Ghanaians how, as we exit the IMF programme” he envisaged.
In the area of Rural development, Mr. Kojo Oppong Nkrumah stated that Government through the ministry of Local Government and Rural Development(MLGRD) is wrapping up work on a rural development policy for Ghana.
The Ofoase-Ayirebi legislator is of the view that the new policy will provide a proper framework in addressing prevailing issues in Ghana’s rural development and the appropriate institutions to an effective response to the challenges.
He added that it will also serve as the single reference point for all ministries, departments, and agencies whose activities and mandates impact on the lives of people living in rural Ghana.
“The policy will provide a roadmap for systematically tackling issues such as poverty rate, high incidence of out-migration, inadequate employment opportunities in rural areas, low investment in infrastructure, and high rate illiteracy and non-functioning of sub-district structure”.
He concluded by admitting that they have not finished solving all of Ghana’s problems rather, their work in the first two years of administration is a good foundation which should enable them to do more in the coming years to further cushion the Ghanaian and even push the country towards a more comfortable life in the medium term.