Seth Terkper: Former finance minister raises questions about gov’t’s plan to build 88 hospitals

Seth Terkper: Former finance minister raises questions about gov’t’s plan to build 88 hospitals

- A former minister of finance, Seth Terkper, has questioned the decision of the government to build 88 hospitals in Ghana

- According to him, there are issues with borrowing to finance such projects as it may be worrying and unnecessary

- He added that the government could possibly extend the debt profile to the long-term to avoid payments of principal and others

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A former minister of finance, Seth Terkper, has raised questions about the government’s plan to build 88 hospitals.

According to him, the country cannot continue to borrow to finance projects as it is worrying and unnecessary.

He added that if there was a capacity to borrow so much money, then there would have been no need to rush to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for GHC 5 billion to fight COVID-19.

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Per a report by classfmonline.com, he added that there was also no need to empty the Stabilisation Fund.

Terkper went on to say that the last three years were the best in terms of oil revenue for the country.

He revealed that oil production increased from about 70,000 barrels per day from the time the Mahama administration left office to about 190,000 per day.

Similarly, oil prices increased from about US$40 per barrel to US$60 per barrel.

The former minister went on to say that the government, in 2019, used 98.8% of gross tax revenue to settle interest payments as well as wages and salaries, leaving only about 1.2% to finance other projects.

As a result, he went on, the government is extending the debt profile to long-term to avoid payments of principal and others.

For that reason, he argued that the government cannot continue to borrow to pay a percentage of the interest payment.

Terkper, therefore, opined that President Akufo-Addo’s announcement to put up 88 projects does not conform with how Ghana does things.

YEN.com.gh earlier reported that in a bid to augment the already existing health facilities that are fronting in the fight of the coronavirus otherwise known as the COVID-19, President Akufo-Addo has revealed that 88 district hospitals are going to be built.

According to the president, the virus has exposed the deficiencies and unequal distribution and health care facilities in the country.

The president said the government has over the years focused on infrastructure in the two big cities to the detriment of the rest.

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Source: Yen Ghana

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