Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta has disclosed that government has spent a total of GH₵15.7 billion on flagship programs in the country including the free Senior High School policy.

He said these programs have in return created a platform for real economic transformation by strengthening human capital through enhancing access to health care, improved education, modernised agriculture, improved infrastructure as well as job creation.

“Today, Mr. Speaker, some 1.2 million Ghanaians are in Senior High School, almost 3 million of our children are in the School Feeding Programme.

“We are exporting food through the Planting for Food and Jobs programme and 1D1F is generating jobs all around. How far indeed has the Lord brought us. This is the competence we promised Ghanaians,” he said during his budget presentation for the first quarter of 2021.

Mr Ofori-Atta Wednesday presented an estimated figure of GH₵ 24.7 billion to Parliament for approval as funding for projects for the 1st quarter of 2021.

The total amount, he said, will cover Government operations, such as
Compensation of Employees, ex gratia awards, Interest and Amortization payments, transfers to Statutory Funds, critical programmes and Goods and Services, and Capex allocations of MDAs.

He said government in the first quarter of the coming year will focus on the (Agenda 111) District and Regional Hospitals, which commenced in
2020 to ensure health facilities are available in all deprived places.

“Currently, 88 site plans have been submitted by the
district assemblies and contractors and consultants are being
procured. The rehabilitation of the Effia Nkunta and Accra
Psychiatric hospitals and the construction of the two Psychiatric
hospitals in Kumasi and Tamale will be fast-tracked.

He also said funds have also been provided to facilitate the reopening of schools in the early part of 2021, [if we continue to keep the spread of
new infections of the Covid-19 virus at its current low levels].

He also said government will also improve Technical and Vocational Skills training in the country.

“In furtherance of Government’s TVET agenda, next year will
witness the start of the JOBS and SKILLS project to support
apprenticeships and competency based training curriculum
development in over 100 trade areas and entrepreneurship.

“Also, we will see the beginning of construction of our flagship
state-of-the-art TVET centres (two per region), fully equipped
with modern training facilities in 33 trades/professions across
11 economic sectors,” he added.