Minority Leader in Parliament, Haruna Iddrisu, has asked for a briefing of the House by the Health Minister over some assistance from China to Ghana.
According to the Tamale South MP, the Asian nation has sent some assistance Ghana’s way to aid the fight against the new coronavirus pandemic that started in Hubei province of China.
Speaking on the floor of the House, Mr. Iddrisu says Kwaku Agyeman-Manu must tell MPs “how he is dealing with matters relating to that and its distribution relative to the need for Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) to support [health workers].”
On the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta’s presentation of the economic impact of the Covid-19 outbreak on Ghana’s economy on Monday, the Minority leader demanded “urgency” from the Finance Committee of the House.
He said: “…yesterday up to today, we must see some urgency of your committee (referring to Chairman of Finance Committee) working, thank you.”
Responding to the National Democratic Congress (NDC) legislator, the Majority Leader, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu said the Finance Minister is not done with his presentation.
He said after Mr. Ofori-Atta addresses MPs on Tuesday, the matter would be referred to the committee for the House to do its work.
“Mr. Speaker, what the Finance Minister did yesterday was to give us an indication of where we are as a nation, the main ingredients would be said today,” the New Patriotic Party (NPP) MP said.
He stressed that the Minister will be back in the House to complete the briefing on Tuesday after which MPs would be more versed with what to deliberate on.
Among others, Mr. Ofori-Atta said government expects a revenue shortfall of some GH¢2.2billion.
“Based on the performance of import duties to date, as well as assumptions on projected decline in import volumes and values, preliminary analysis shows that import duties will fall short of target by GHȼ808 million for the 2020 fiscal year,” Mr. Ofori-Atta told MPs.
The Minister said, “the projected slowdown in non-oil GDP as a result of the coronavirus pandemic is expected to result in shortfalls in tax revenues (excluding oil tax revenues and import duties).”
These, he said amount to some GHȼ1.4 billion. This brings the total estimated shortfall in non-oil tax revenues to GHȼ2.2 billion, Ofori-Atta noted.