Let’s make 2018 a year with difference

All too soon another year 2017 has been consigned to the annals of history and a new of year, 2018 has been ushered in.

The new year has come with a lot of expectations and hopes for a brighter future, not forgetting the challenges that we might confront. Our particular concern is in the area of the economy and our focus on the public sector financial management!

The Ghanaian taxpayer expects quality service delivery from the public sector in terms of provision of social service and other basic amenities to make life worth living.

In this regard, Parliament, before  rising  December last year, passed the 2017 Appropriation Bill, authorising the government  to spend GH¢67,279,955.085 from the Consolidated Fund and other funds for the 2018 financial year ending December 31.

The passage of the bill is in line with Article 179(2) of the 1992 Constitution which mandates the representatives of the people to approve the Appropriation Bill disbursement of public funds for the public good.

Considering its importance to the governance of the country, the bill was passed under the certificate of urgency, and the President was expected to have assented the bill on December 31, last year, to make withdrawal of the fund possible to finance public expenditure.

All what Ghanaians expect is prudent use of the fund to improve their wellbeing and welfare. Indeed, GH¢ 67.3 billion is such a colossal amount of money that when prudently used for the plans, programmes and project earmarked for the year, can have huge positive impact on the lives of ordinary Ghanaians.

The government has passed good legislative framework to guide public financial management, including the Financial Administration Act, 2003; Public Procurement Act 2003 and the Financial Administration Regulation 2004, to complement the public sector reform programmes.

In spite of these, every year, the Auditor General’s  reports on the Consolidated Fund is littered with numerous infraction  of laws, giving way to embezzlement, misappropriation of public funds; the funds that could have been  used for the good of the people ends up in private pocket.

The end results is that projects meant to improve the lives of the people remain uncompleted, shabbily completed and in some cases moneys are paid for no work done, this must not happen again!

Besides, Ghana has subscribed to the global agenda of the Sustainable Development Goals meant to improve human development, toward eliminating poverty by the year 2030, so that no one would be left behind.

The Ghanaian Times understands that the 2018 budgetary allocation has been matched with the 18 goals and the over hundred targets. We expect that the people who are entrusted with the disbursement of these public funds would live up to expectation by being transparent and accountable.

We are reminding public and civil servants who have the tendency to corrupt that it would be unprofitable to engage in that enterprise, because the Auditor General has started surcharging people cited in the Auditor General’s reports for embezzlement, to retrieve stolen and unaccounted public funds, whether dead or alive!



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