The Minister of Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, yesterday said that it is only the current government under the Fourth Republic which has undertaken more impactful policies and programmes that are benefiting more Ghanaians.
According to him, policies such as Free Senior High School (SHS), Planting for Food and Jobs (PFJs) among others were making the needed impact and reducing poverty.
Mr Oppong Nkrumah was speaking at the 4th Regional Town Hall meeting at Techiman.
It was held under the theme “Accounting for financial sector resolution, jobs and agriculture.’’
The Information Minister, revealed that it would cost the government GH¢14 billion for the banking sector reforms which included payment of depositors’ funds.
Giving reasons for the banking sector clean-up, the Deputy Chief Manager of Banking Supervision Department of Bank of Ghana, Mustapha Sarbeng, said, some the financial institutions granted huge unrecoverable loans and engaged in excessive high risk taking coupled with poor corporate governance and low capital.
As a result, they became insolvent; necessitating government’s intervention through the Central Bank to revoke their license and re-organise some and allow the Ghana Commercial Bank to take over GTbank and Capital Bank.
It became necessary for Bank of Ghana also to consolidate five banks including Royal Bank, Beige Capital Bank, and Premium Bank amongst others”, he said.
According to the BoG official, who spoke on behalf of the Governor of BoG, Dr Ernest Addison, so far, licenses of 420 financial institutions including 347 micro finances had been revoked by August 16, 2019.
Going forward to ensure effective banking services and make sure depositors savings are not lost, government he said was going to launch this month, what is called Deposit Protection Corporation, so that in the event that there is deficiency in financial service sector, depositors can fall on to recoup some of their savings.
Dwelling on employment generation by the government the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations, Ignatius Baffour-Awuah, stated that the employment rate had reduced from 11.9 per cent in 2015 to 7.1 per cent in 2019.
He said the Planting for Food and Jobs, alone had accounted for about 1.5 million jobs across the country. The Employment Minister said, together with NVTI, the Ministry would soon roll out proficiency test for artisans and also create a directory to sharpen their skills as well as ensure easy access to their services, saying gainful employment was not only about having jobs in the formal sector.
Other speakers at the forum highlighted various projects and programmes being implemented by the government to better the lot of Ghanaians to give them hope for the future.
FROM DANIEL DZIRASAH, TECHIMAN