Political Risk Analyst, Dr. Theo Acheampong, has asked the government to strengthen the checks and balance system in various state institutions.
This, he believes will help government render a proper account of expenditure in all its institutions.
“At the core, the checks and balances that we have within our governance architecture is extremely weak. So, in an event like Covid or any other sort of external event, it now exposes the strong weaknesses that we have within the core,” he said.
Speaking on JoyNews’ Newsfile on Saturday, he explained that each time a report is released there are always monies that cannot be accounted for.
“You can see this pattern whether it is Covid or the other reports that the Auditor General issued, consistently our institutions, our agencies, or departments are able to spend without recourse to the laid down processes and the laid down procedures,” he said.
Dr. Acheampong, while describing the government’s coffers as a ‘leaking basket’ said “the laws are not working. Those checks and balances are not working so we keep collecting money, whether it is Covid money, IMF money or World Bank, and it keeps going into the same leaking basket, only for us to get to a point where we are not able to pay, so we have to restructure our debt.”
His comments follow the report by the Auditor-General which revealed some infractions in the government’s expenditure for Covid-19 from March 2020 to June 2022.
Some of the infractions that were uncovered include; paying a total of US$607,419.02 out of US$4,049,460.12 for the purchase of 26 ambulances that were never delivered, paying unapproved GH ₵151,500 by the Information Ministry to its own staff as Covid insurance, and paying for $80 million worth of vaccines by the government that was never delivered, amongst others.
Meanwhile, the Health Committee in Parliament has set February 7 as the date to commence a public hearing on the Covid-19 expenditure by the government.
Also, former Auditor General, Daniel Yao Domelevo, has called for more severe sanctions against people involved in the Covid-19 expenditure infractions as contained in the Auditor-General’s report.
According to him, the norm where the infractions are merely reported in the Audit report with little to no consequence for the culprits needs to change immediately.
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