Sanctions under the new Public Financial Management (PFM) Law, Act 921 will be applied to all public office holders, including Ministers of State and other political appointees, without any fear or favour, the Minister of Finance, Seth Terkper, has stressed.
Interacting with the media yesterday on the PFM Law which was passed by Parliament last month, Mr. Terkper said no public office holder who flouted the law would be allowed to go scot free.
He warned that the law would deal with any public office holder, irrespective of the person’s position in government, or the political connections.
“Nobody is above this law,” he said, and added that the sanctions were not made for only ministers of state and political appointees but for all managers of public funds, principal account holders and principal spending officers in public offices.
The object of the Act, which was passed to replace the Financial Administration Act (FAA) of 2003 and the Loans Act of 1970, is to regulate the financial management of the public sector within a macro economic and fiscal framework.
The Act provides a comprehensive legislative framework for the operations of the entire public sector, including the central government, local authorities, statutory funds and State Owned Enterprises (SOEs).
Mr. Terkper said the Act had consolidated and given legal backing to all the fiscal reforms introduced by the government in the past few years, in budgeting and accounting under the GIFMIS project.
Deputy Minister of Finance, Mrs. Mona Quartey, in an address, said the Act had addressed the continuing fiscal challenges which required some structural changes, and added that “there are also provisions setting out new policy measures regarding borrowing and debt management among others”.
She said the government had introduced a number of reforms which sought to establish efficient, transparent and accountable resource mobilisation, allocation, management and use of fiscal resources to meet the country’s development priorities and commitments.
She said the reforms introduced under the PFM in 2009, included the GIFMIS which was aimed at providing improved aggregate expenditure control, predictability for financial flows, expenditure and investment planning, ability to monitor expenditure and fiscal accountability
“Payroll upgrade was undertaken and the latest version of the Oracle Payroll is being implemented and has been integrated with the Oracle Financials. The migration of integrated financials or payroll was completed to improve service delivery.”
“GIFMIS Interface with E-Monitor for the Non Tax revenues was also implemented to improve non tax revenue collection,” she said.
In 2014, she said the government introduced a programme based budgeting which focused on improved result, efficiency, accountability performance and service delivery.
In addition, she said the hyperion budget software was introduce to facilitate planning, preparation, aggregation, approval and reporting of budget information and added that the initiative had significantly improved budget management information.