NDC MPs threaten legal action against revised 2018 budget

NDC MPs threaten legal action against revised 2018 budget
Source: Ghana | Myjoyonline.com
Date: 22-11-2017 Time: 11:11:18:pm
Muntaka Mubarak

Minority parliamentarians have turned up their opposition to the 2018 budget a notch higher by threatening to begin a legal action to correct what they believe is a breach of aspects of the Public Financial Management Act.

Minority Chief Whip, Alhaji Muntaka Mubarak, has said the foundation on which Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, presented 2018 Budget Statement and Economic Policy on the floor of the House raises questions in law.

The Minority first raised concerns about the budget through its spokesperson on Finance, Cassiel Ato Forson, who called for the withdrawal of the policy statement.

Mr Forson had indicated that governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) government had reviewed key economic targets in the budget without seeking the approval of Parliament.

Photo: Ato Forson

“The Minister responsible for Finance cannot revise the expenditures and revenue without parliamentary resolution,” Mr Forson said Tuesday.

Related: 'Ato Forson must be joking' - Gov't dismisses budget withdrawal demand

However, in a sharp rebuttal, Deputy Finance Minister, Kwaku Kwarteng, said the call for the withdrawal of the policy statement was a joke at best.

Chairman of the Parliament's Finance Committee, Mark Assibey Yeboah, also urged the opposition MPs to go to court if they feel the review of the budget was unconstitutional.

It seems the NDC legislators are giving that advice a heavy thought.

Mr Muntaka said Wednesday that among the various options available to the Minority to correct illegality, a court action seems the most appealing.

“It is an option that we are looking at because we think that, what they [government] did amounts to an illegality. We never had the revised budget and all of a sudden you are saying we have a revised budget. That is an illegality and you used the revised as the basis for most projections,” he said.

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