“Drastically reduce the number of Ministers, and scrap all ex-gratia payments for political and non-political beneficiaries.” – Ablakwa

Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, a member of parliament for North Tongu, has urged the government to “cancel vanity projects” and stop paying ex-gratia in order to revive the faltering national economy.

He asserts that the government must also cut the number of ministers and appointees in the presidency.

The current labor unrest and the nation’s ongoing discussions for a bailout with the IMF, in his opinion, have made these steps inevitable.

He wrote in a facebook post; “Cancel vanity projects such as the proposed new €116 million new Accra International Conference Centre project, 5 STEM universities, Boankra Green Technology City, Marine Drive Project, Stadia for Abuakwa and Sunyani, Agenda 111, new embassies in Trinidad and Tobago and Mexico.

“Drastically reduce the number of Ministers, abolish Deputy CEO positions, dismiss the CEO for the ridiculous non-existent Keta Port and slash the outrageous 337 political appointees at the Office of the President by more than half,”

He also added that; “an immediate review of Ghana’s end-of-service benefits regime and scrap all ex-gratia payments for political and non-political beneficiaries.”

My selection of urgent expenditure cuts and concrete actions required in the face of an IMF bailout and crippling labour agitations:
1) Suspend the unconstitutional public funding of the US$400million National Cathedral project which government has so far diverted over GHS200million without parliamentary approval;
2) Renegotiate with owners of demolished properties at the National Cathedral location for a deferred compensation and save an estimated US$100million;
3) Ban all oligarchic presidential chartered jet travels which have cost suffering taxpayers in excess of GHS34million over the last 13 months;
4) Announce an immediate review of Ghana’s end of service benefits regime and scrap all ex-gratia payments for political and non-political beneficiaries;
5) Drastically reduce the number of Ministers, abolish Deputy CEO positions, dismiss the CEO for the ridiculous non-existent Keta Port and slash the outrageous 337 political appointees at the Office of the President by more than half;
6) Cancel vanity projects such as the proposed new €116million new Accra International Conference Centre project, 5 STEM universities, Boankra Green Technology City, Marine Drive Project, Stadia for Abuakwa and Sunyani, Agenda 111, new embassies in Trinidad and Tobago and Mexico;
7) Reallocate funds from government’s lavish GHS993million contingency vote (up by 431.5% from 186million in 2021) to other critical sectors such as meeting COLA demands of suffering Ghanaian workers;
8)Parliament should also shelve plans to construct new constituency offices for MPs;
9) Stop all ongoing opaque and crony procurement processes, particularly in the Communications and Digitalisation space where a Nigerian-led cabal have literally hijacked virtually every government contract (Further exposition on this to follow shortly);
10) The Executive, Legislature and Civil Society Organisations should jointly commission a special “Operation Retrieve and Recover” to take back billions of taxpayer funds in the wrong hands as revealed in various Auditor-General Reports over the last 10 years.

Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa

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