Lecturer at the University of Ghana, Prof. Godfred Bopkin has called for better particulars on the recent announcement of a freeze on usage of V8 within the capital for all government appointees.
He is concerned that until clear guidelines are given, the directive contained in the 2023 Budget presented to Parliament on November 24, risks being flouted.
The economist, who has long advocated for austerity amid the economic crunch Ghana is facing, cautioned that clarity on austerity measures on the part of government must be clear to allow people appreciate same.
“We must be very careful we don’t push people beyond the point where they will not be able to tolerate. That is the part that we are getting towards and especially when you don’t see greater commitment in internalizing that austerity.
“So, if you tell me that don’t drive V8 in Accra, who monitors that? If I see V8 leaving from East Legon, do I conclude it’s going to Central Region?” he quizzed in an interview on Joy FM, November 25.
What Ofori-Atta said about V8s
Under the section of the budget on “Implementation of the Cabinet directives on expenditure measures,” the Minister said:
Mr. Speaker, as a first step toward expenditure rationalisation, Government has approved the following directives which takes effect from January, 2023:
● All MDAs, MMDAs and SOEs are directed to reduce fuel allocations to Political
Appointees and heads of MDAs, MMDAs and SOEs by 50%. This directive applies to all methods of fuel allocation including coupons, electronic cards, chit system, and fuel depots. Accordingly, 50% of the previous years (2022) budget allocation for fuel shall be earmarked for official business pertaining to MDAs, MMDAs and SOEs;
● A ban on the use of V8s/V6s or its equivalent except for cross country travel. All government vehicles would be registered with GV green number plates from January 2023;
● Limited budgetary allocation for the purchase of vehicles. For the avoidance of doubt, purchase of new vehicles shall be restricted to locally assembled vehicles;
● Only essential official foreign travel across government including SOEs shall be allowed. No official foreign travel shall be allowed for board members. Accordingly, all government institutions should submit a travel plan for the year 2023 by mid-December of all expected travels to the Chief of Staff;