Covid-19 expenditure: If you have nothing to hide; you have nothing to fear – Mintah Akandoh to Ofori-Atta
Ranking Member on Parliament’s Health Committee, Kwabena Mintah Akandoh has asked the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta to account for the expenditure on Covid-19.
Speaking in an interview on JoyFM’s Midday News on Monday, Mr. Akandoh called on the government to come clear saying “If you have nothing to hide; you have nothing to fear.”
“We started calling for this accountability not today and you know. Under bizarre circumstances, the Deputy threw out our motion to set up a bipartisan committee to probe this particular matter.
“We are still insisting that the Minister responsible for Finance must account in detail of whatever they have spent on Covid, especially when they are telling us all Parliamentary candidates for the NPP in the 2020 election had 50,000 each,” he stressed.
His call for accountability comes after Managers of some public health facilities said they are struggling to cope after they incurred debts in caring for persons who had Covid-19 at the peak of the pandemic.
Government had assured its financial and logistical support to some of these facilities but 2 years on, some managers of the facilities said they are yet to receive the monies.
Chief Executive of the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital, Dr. Opoku Ware Ampomah reported that government is owing an amount of 5 million cedis in expenditure.
Reacting to this, Mr. Akandoh said that “If you decide to dish out Covid money to people like roasted groundnut, this is what you will see.”
“..Almost all the Teaching Hospitals have some kind of debt related to Covid in their books. GHC5million not only that, the front line health workers have not been given what they are due and so if you spend between 23 to 25 billion cedis on Covid and you still leave our health facilities in debt, then I don’t understand. Somebody must explain to me,” he demanded.
He added that government is hesitant to account for the expenditure because they know what they have done to the Covid funds.
As a result, he maintained that the Minority will insist that the Finance Minister accountS for the Covid-19 expenditure.
Meanwhile, the Speaker of Parliament has also directed the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, to appear before the House to provide a detailed breakdown of all monies approved for spending during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The directive came after the Chairman of the Finance Committee, Kweku Kwarteng moved the motion for the approval of €75 million for the Covid-19 health response project.
However, the Minority in Parliament resisted the motion, throwing the House into a state of disagreement.
The Speaker, after listening to the MPs directed that the Finance Minister appears to account for the Covid-19 expenditure.
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