January 23, 2022

2020 budget: Bagbin wants Finance Minister to present revised budget to Parliament

The Speaker of Parliament has asked the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, to present a revised version of the 2022 budget to Parliament.

Addressing Parliament on Thursday, the Speaker, Alban Bagbin, stressed that the revisions captured in a letter presented to him by the Finance Minister were only “indications of intent” and must be formalized.

He thus said the Finance Minister needed to come to Parliament “with those modifications, concessions or amendments specifically captured in the documents to make them known” so the House could officially accept them.

Mr. Bagbin said it was important to find a “path that is faithful to law, respects our rules and processes and ensures the governance of the country does not grind to a halt.”

“Those modifications, amendments and concessions will then be adopted by the House and the revised documents in the estimates will stand committed to the various committees of Parliament,” Mr. Bagbin explained.

Though various committees in Parliament have begun considering estimates from the initial budget presented by the Finance Minister, Mr. Bagbin tasked the committees to “reconcile the revised estimates with what they have hitherto considered and submit a report for the consideration of the House.”

As an example of why this was necessary, Mr. Bagbin cited government’s intent to allocate GH¢10 million for feasibility studies for the Blekusu sea defence project.

“That GH¢10 million will definitely be taken from another item that has been captured in what has been presented,” he surmised.

The revisions made by the government were in response to the Minority’s call for the suspension of the Electronic Transaction Levy, the removal of suggestions of the Agyapa deal from the budget, rewording of the paragraph on the Aker Energy deal, action on the coastal erosion and a review of the benchmark import values.

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