Speaker proposes review of how budgets are read

Speaker of Parliament
Google search engine
Speaker of Parliament Alban Bagbin has served notice that the House will be reconsidering how budget statements are read on the floor of the house in order to reduce the timing for the presentation.

This comes after it took the Leader of Government business, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu over 3hours to read the 2021 fiscal year budget.

During the presentation, the Majority Leader jokingly said even some of his colleagues in the House who were seated listening to him were even tired.

After the presentation, the Speaker said the House will in accordance to its standing orders relook how the budgets are read in the house in future.

“We have to look at how budgets are presented in the future. We will do so in future in accordance with our standing orders.”

The government is proposing in the 2021 budget statement the introduction of a Covid-19 Health Levy of a one percentage point increase in the National Health Insurance Levy and a one percentage point increase in the VAT Flat Rate to support expenditures related to Covid-19.

Reading the budget “To provide the requisite resources to address these challenges and fund these activities, government is proposing the introduction of a Covid-19 Health Levy of a one percentage point increase in the National Health Insurance Levy and a one percentage point increase in the VAT Flat Rate to support expenditures related to Covid-19.”

Regarding other sectors of the economy, the budget pegged Ghana’s fiscal deficit at 13.7 per cent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

This deficit, according to the budget, include the cost of the financial sector cleanup up.

“The fiscal deficit including the financial sector cost for 2020 is 13 .7 per cent of GDP,” the budget said adding that “it was financed from both domestic and external sources.”

Regarding Ghana’s debt stock, the budget said the debt rose from 122billion in 2019 to 291.6billion as at the end of December 2020.

The debt include the cost of the financial sector cleanup, the majority leader added.

Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu further assured Ghanaians that there is no cause for alarm in the face of the coronavirus crisis, which hit the country in March, 2020.

He said the measures taken by government so far makes Ghana better positioned to recover economically from the pandemic.

“Government succeeded in protecting virtually all jobs and incomes in public sector. For the people of Ghana have witnessed since the coronavirus pandemic ahead of the rest of the world, a leadership that is responsible, creative, courageous, decisive and above all very caring.

He said the policies such as the Coronavirus Alleviation Programme (CAP) have seen major results recorded “that have made it easier for people to cope with this unprecedented crisis”.

For him, the measures taken were to save lives, protect livelihoods and safeguard economic activities and they did just that.

“Mr Speaker, today Ghana is better positioned to recover and rebuild an even more resilient economy. Nobody says we know how to do it but also because the grace of God has been assured for this journey.”

By Laud Nartey|3news.com|Ghana

]]>
Google search engine