Former deputy Finance Minister, George Kweku Ricketts-Hagan says Ghana’s economy is in shambles and can’t be resuscitated anytime soon.
Speaking to Prince Minkah on XYZ Tonight, the former Deputy Trades and Industry Minister indicated that the Akufo-Addo government has borrowed incessantly and the Ghanaian people have to suffer for the government’s insensitivity.
Bemoaning the country’s debt stock, Ricketts-Hagan said the Akufo-Addo government managed the economy ” through lies and borrowing”
“We have not been doing well with revenue. We are doing about 16 percent,” the Cape Coast South MP said as he criticised the New Patriotic Party (NPP) administration of losing grips of the economy.
This comes after The 2021 budget statement and economic policy of the government proposed new taxes on petroleum products, 1% COVID-19 Health Levy on VAT Flat Rate Scheme and another 1% on the National Health Insurance Levy (NHIL).
The reactions from a section of Ghanaians indicate that the Akufo-Addo government is insensitive to the plights of the millions of Ghanaians whose businesses have been hit hard by the pandemic.
Despite the government’s explanation that the new taxes will help speed up the revival of the economy, Ricketts-Hagan insists the economic management team went on a wrong tangent when it recommended for new taxes to be imposed on Ghanaians, who are yet to recover from the negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
He believes most citizens may evade the taxes because of their inability to make inroads in their businesses.
“If you begin to tax the people over and over, it becomes counter productive” he said and explained that government will not reach its revenue target because most citizens will find ways to evade taxes and that will bring “trouble”.
“Now, you have borrowed to the hill and there is no space to borrow again. if you need to borrow again, you’ll pay high interest rates,” he added.
The former Deputy Finance Minister stated he did not see any economic recovery soon because the massive borrowing in the part of the Akufo-Addo government has put the government on a debt “cliff” which is “extremely bad” for the country’s progress.
Describing the new taxes as “incompetent taxes”, Ricketts-Hagan said those measures could not put the economy on the right track.