Claims that the government has not been open about its COVID-19 expenditure have been refuted by Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta.
In a speech to the legislature on June 22, 2022, he stated that the government has fully reported all allocated, mobilized, and used monies related to the coronavirus pandemic in accordance with its commitment to accountability and openness.
In response to anomalies in the government’s expenditure data, the Minority National Democratic Congress (NDC) Members of Parliament demanded an audit of all Covid-19-related expenses.
In response to queries, Mr. Ofori-Atta stated that the government is honest about its expenditure items, would maintain an open-door policy, and welcomes any chance to work for the good of the country.
“Mr Speaker, at this juncture, I wish to dispel the notion that there have been inconsistencies in government data on Covid-19. The President intimated during that State of the Nation Address on March 30, 2022, that we had mobilised about Gh¢17.7 billion since 2020 to fight the pandemic.
“We have subsequently reconciled the data and I can report that as of end-May, 2022, we have mobilised Gh¢18.19 billion to mitigate the effect of the pandemic. Again, when the Vice President indicated on April 7, 2022, at the National TESCON Conference that government had spent Gh¢8.1 billion on Covid-19, it was within the context of expenditures for 2020 as I have already indicated,” the Minister said.
This, the Minister explained that, out of the Gh¢18.19 billion expended to mitigate the effect of the pandemic, GH¢1,550 million was disbursed under the Support to Households Programme, GH¢1,049 million was allocated to health response-supplies equipment and relief for health workers, GH¢600 million was released to begin the construction across the country and a further GH¢763.92 million has been released to continue the construction of the 111 district hospitals.