Deputy Finance Minister, John Kumah, has asked Economist with the University of Ghana Business School (UGBS), Godfred Alufar Bokpin, to live by his own advice in reference to a statement made by the Professor regarding the government’s expenditure and the decision to introduce the e-levy.

The Professor, as part of solutions to Ghana’s debt crisis, advised government to eradicate wasteful spending and ensure discipline in revenue generation and expenditure since these are more sustainable techniques than raising revenue through the proposed e-levy.

He further argued that “a spoilt child needs discipline, not more money,” hence, efficient revenue control should be government’s lifestyle.

In a reaction to these submissions on the Super Morning Show, the Deputy Finance Minister said the comments were ironic coming from Prof Bokpin who is among lecturers, who are on strike over salaries.

“You’re refusing to agree with government on raising revenue, at the same time you’re telling government it must cut expenditures which we are happy to do. When we’re doing all these cuttings and tightening, the same people are on strike asking for more money. How do we balance all these?” he asked.

“We all agree that there’s a need to address the challenges in the economy and that we must all spend within our means but we know the reality has been that we have run the Ghanaian economy on a deficit arrangement for a very long time. If we’re cutting expenditure and asking government for more expenditure that’s more expensive,” he said.

Touching on the lecturers’ demand for an increase in salary, he said government was not going to heed such calls until the end of 2022.

“Per the budget that we have now and per their own advise that government must cut expenditure, our government cannot pay more. If we’re cutting expenditure and you’re asking the government for more money, that’s more expenditure. So we should live by our own advice especially Prof Bokpin when he says that ‘a spoilt child doesn’t need more money but more discipline.’

“We are all children. He’s part of the spoilt children and he should understand that government can only spend within how much it has raised. So if he’s giving advice, he shouldn’t give advice and go and act in the opposite way,” he added.