Poor accountability, incessant borrowing responsible for economic woes—Agyeman-Duah

The co-founder of the Center for Democratic Development (CDD), Professor Baffour Agyeman-Duah, has affirmed that history shows poor accountability and incessant borrowing is responsible for the country’s current and future economic woes. 

He indicated that “public officials do many things that are detrimental to the progress, growth and development of the country and create lapses in our probity, transparency and accountability systems to perpetuate thebehaviour”. 

Recounting what he called “very progressive movement” in debt accumulation, Prof. Agyeman-Duah traced steady increase in country’s national debt over the last 12 years and observed that “when former President John Agyekum Kufuor was leaving office in 2008, we were told officially, our national debt was about GH¢9 billion.

“Former Presidents Atta Mills and John Mahama came in the next eight years, and they moved it from GH¢9 billion to GH¢120 billion or GH¢125 billion. President NanaAddo DankwaAkufo-Addo came in and now we are approaching GH¢300 billion and the situation will remain since governments have no clear-cut plan on making money besides borrowing,” he lamented.

Prof. Agyeman-Duah cautioned the citizenry against the notion of ‘free lunch’, likening policies like free education and free utilities to a mortgage because consuming and enjoying today was mortgaging the future by not only building up debt but also [sticking to a] new approach of practically mortgaging resources in return for loans to build infrastructure.

He pointed out that freebies from the government would have to be recouped through increased tariffs and mortgaged resources as in the case of the COVID-19 utility reliefs and the Syno-Hydro Deal. 

“As most citizens may express their dissatisfaction in a government by seeking change at the polls, that real change may not be in the duopoly system Ghana currently has, since even today, you listen to news and how Parliament is behaving, the hope of a hung Parliament will be more aggressive in cross-checking the Executive but we are not beginning to see that.

“They seem to be compromised on many issues and the two parties, the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the National Democratic Congress (NDC), win political power and govern how they want to and that is the danger we face,” Prof. Agyeman-Duahsaid. –classfmonline.com

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