The 2023 Budget and Economic Policy, released by Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta, contains certain expenditure lines that the Tax Justice Coalition is pleading with lawmakers to reject.
The Coalition claims that the Minister of Finance broke the law when he gave money to the National Cathedral Secretariat that was intended for emergency use.
The coalition said it has noticed with concern the budget line “Contingency Vote” that appears in Ghana’s Annual Budget and Economic Policy Statement over the years and wishes to call on Ghana’s Parliament not to approve the expenditure line in the 2023 Annual Budget and future Budgets.
It described as unacceptable the contingency vote amounting to ¢1.41 billion, ¢3.41 billion, ¢5.9 billion and ¢14.5 billion for 2023, 2024, 2025 and 2026, respectively, saying “this is unacceptable as it defeats the purpose of budgeting and subverts the approval powers by Parliament”.
“This is because the practice is at variance with the laws of the country. The laws have prescribed the procedures that the Minister of Finance must follow in order to cater for unforeseen and unbudgeted expenditures that come up after the budget has been approved”.
“In other words, there is NO provision for a Contingency Vote in Ghana’s 1992 Constitution and there is also NO provision for it in the Public Financial Management Act, 2016 (Act 921) and its predecessor Financial Administration Act, 2003 (Act 654)” it explained.