The Member of Parliament for Bawku Central, Isaac Adongo, has said that the Bank of Ghana (BoG) has printed more than the GH₵44 billion it recently stated it used to finance the budget of the government.
Speaking in a Good Morning Ghana interview on Monday, February 13, 2023, the MP said that the amount of money the BoG stated excludes the monies it printed for the government in 2021.
He added that the central bank has printed nearly GH₵80 billion to finance the budget of the Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo government.
“The situation is even worse than the GH₵44 billion, you know why. They use this method of securitisation. What they do is that at the end of the year instead of doing an overdraft that will be accumulating, they will violate the law by not repaying the money but rather transform it into a loan that will sit on the books in the name of the government.
“We end 2021 will GH₵35 billion of central bank lending, so that is already sitting on the books of Bank of Ghana as total exposure to government at the end of 2021.
“Then they start from zero in 2022 and it was GH₵44 billion at the end of the year. That one too will now be scrutinised to add to the GHC35 that is already sitting there and it will now be almost GH₵80 billion that the government has borrowed from the Bank of Ghana,” he said.
He added that even though the government has pumped more money into the system, the economy is not improving because government officials are stealing the money.
Isaac Adongo was reacting to a justification by the central bank on its decision to print over GH¢44 billion for the government to finance the 2022 budget which is above the required threshold and needs the approval of parliament.
According to the BoG, it was left with no option but to support the government because it’s (the government’s) access to International Capital Market was closed and the domestic market was also struggling.
In a statement issued on Thursday, February 9, 2023, the central bank posited that its action was not wrong since the Fiscal Responsibility Act, 2018 which was suspended by the Parliament of Ghana, had not been reinstated.
The statement by the BoG comes after it was heavily criticized by some Ghanaians after a Bloomberg report indicated that it printed GH¢41.9 billion for the government in 2022.
Broadcaster, Dr. Randy Abbey, who was reacting to the Bloomberg report, said that the BoG, which is supposed to be regulating the country’s financial sector, appears to be breaking all the rules in the sector.
“The level of seeming recklessness and lawlessness, and irresponsibility when it comes to the operation of the central bank and the lack of transparency is getting worrying,” he said.
— Metropolitan Television (@metrotvgh) February 13, 2023