Politics

MR PRESIDENT, RESIST THE TEMPTATION OF USING THE PLIGHT OF GHANAIANS OVER CORONAVIRUS TO DEFRAUD THE TAXPAYER

Mr President

Thank you for addressing the nation about your administration’s response to the coronavirus. Many Ghanaians complained bitterly about your weeks late response on the issue. Your silence was baffling. You’ve been hailed by your admirers as a great communicator and have been quick to take to microphone, the TV camera and twitter to express your views on all sort of things including chastising and blaming of your predecessor. But always silent on key issues facing our nation.

Mr President, how is the $100 million’s disbursement, monitoring and performance of the anti corona virus team going to be examined. Effective monitoring, transparency in the operations of the team and accountability are strong predictors when it comes to performance of such teams and will account for about 80 percent of variance in performance. We need well designed guidelines to ensure that the money is disbursed only upon proper authorisation, for valid purpose, and all expenditures properly recorded and accounted for.

Mr President, I am appealing to you and the team to resist the temptation of using the plight of Ghanaians who are so confused over the corona virus menace, to defraud the taxpayer.

Mr President, I am making this passionate appeal because of what we witnessed recently in the country; how funds allocated to state agencies and committees were misappropriated by some of your appointees. Those who receive cash floats must make use of them only for the purpose for which they were authorized and must be held personally responsible and financially liable for the proper management and prudent usage. In addition, they must be in a position at all times to account for all advances and should submit well prepared accounts.

Mr President, the situation (corona virus menace) demands information sharing. Fighting the cases individually is not the right approach. Lack of effective communication between West African governments aggravated Ebola spread when it first hit the subregion. Effective communication network instituted by former President Mahama and his team with support from the UN ensured the desired solution. Having learned from the Ebola epidemic, some countries in Africa including Ghana invested heavily in the public health institutes to strengthen their capacity for any such outbreak response. This culminated in the building of more ultramodern hospitals and renovation of some existing ones across the country including the University of Ghana Teaching Hospital and the district hospitals which have been abandoned by your administration because of cheap political permutations.

Mr President, the World Bank group is making available an initial package of up to $12 billion in immediate support to assist countries coping with the health and economic impact of the global outbreak. According to the world bank, the new fast track package will help developing countries strengthen health systems, including better access to health services to safeguard people from the epidemic. Your predecessor built ultramodern hospitals, furnished the new and the existing hospitals with modern health facilities, gave financial support to some pharmaceutical companies to increase their production and for their research work, trained more doctors and nurses, built more polyclinics and chps compounds to take care of our people in the rural areas. That is leadership and that is what the world bank intends to implement across the continent. By comparing the cost of ill health and cost of preventive measures, it can be seen that the emphasis is on cure than prevention. But now that we know that much of the sickness including the corona disease is preventable, and know how it can be prevented. It is expected that in the immediate future, more and more money we are now spending on curative measures will become diverted to projects for preservation of health.

Mr President, the general outcry by the citizens against misappropriation of public funds merits serious attention

Mr President, continued search for a solution to the problem of poor economic management due to massive corruption and financial misappropriation in the public sector and in your government in particular, and the general outcry against your committees (investigative bodies) because of their perceived connivance has necessitated the call on you to establish a genuinely independent body supported by the auditor general to monitor the funds disbursement and usage.

Mr President, your party’s executives have made Ghanaians aware that the party needs money and are bent on doing everything under the sun legal or illegal to raise funds for your party’s activities. I hope and pray that substantial part of the $100 million is not channeled into party activities.

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