By Masahudu Ankiilu Kunateh
For over two decades, all the various Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) in Ghana have callously failed to prepare their accounts.
To this end, the Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee of Parliament, Mr. Albert Kan Dapaah, has passionately appealed to the Mills-led government, as a matter of urgency, to sanction all the Chief Directors of these MDAs.
According to him, it was scandalous on the part of the MDAs, headed by the Chief Directors, whimsical refusal to account for the funds they used during the year.
Mr. Kan Dapaah made the appeal at a well-attended public lecture organised by the Ghana Centre for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana) and Friedrich Naumann Foundation (FNF) in Accra.
He added that “after utilising the tax payers’ monies, they have the right to know how the monies were being used. But, alas, Ghana’s MDAs fail to comply with the public accounts management regimes of the land.”
The Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee of Parliament and Member of Parliament (MP) for Afigya-Sekyere West was not happy with the way the MDAs managed public resources in the country.
Speaking on a topic ‘Public Accountability Effects and Donor Budget Support’, Mr. Kan Dapaah revealed that no attempt was being made by the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning (MOFEP) to link its budgets with the country’s Medium-term Development Plan. This, he said, had dire consequences on Ghana’s development.
Mr. Kan Dapaah was quick to point out that present and successive Ministers of Finance and Economic Planning have had lukewarm attitudes towards the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC), stressing that the MOFEP continues to snub the commission in the consultation process of the budget.
In order to solve these anomalies, he suggested to the government that the Chairman of the NDPC should be ranked into the cabinet portfolio.
He used the occasion to admonish the Finance Ministry to take care when slashing budgets of the MDAs, adding that this had led to shoddy projects being implemented in the country.
However, the Head of Budget Development of the MOFEP, Ms. Eva Esselba Mends, who chaired the function, responded that some of the MDAs overestimate their budgets, hence the downward review.