Flag-bearer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) for the 2020 National elections, John Dramani Mahama has proposed to the Akufo-Addo administration to hold a stakeholder forum on the economy in effort the arrest the depreciation of the cedi.
Dwelling on his administration’s three-day Senchi Economic Forum in 2014, which was boycotted by the now – governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) – who at the time were in opposition, the former president, John Mahama said the current government was “probably at such a decision point.”
The cedi has depreciated against the dollar from GH₵ 4.9 to over GH₵ 5.5 since the turn of the year. In a message on Facebook, the former president said: “the recent free fall of the cedi against all major foreign currencies, may be exposing a deeper malaise in the ‘fundamentals of the economy’.”
“It may serve Akufo-Addo/Bawumia and their economic team well to own up to their shortcomings and call a Senchi type stakeholder forum on the economy.”
For the former first man of the country, such a move will bolster the government’s credibility when it creates “a consultative process that forges a consensus and allows a nation to move forward.”
The John Mahama led administration held a National Economic Forum at Senchi in 2014 and ended with a 22-point resolution.
Among other things, stakeholders agreed that the Directive Principles of State Policy must continue to guide the national development effort, that long term national interest should supersede all other interests and that the State must encourage indigenous entrepreneurship.
Meanwhile, the Minister of Finance, Mr. Ken Ofori-Atta, has given an assurance that the cedi will begin to appreciate against its major currencies within the next two weeks. “The reversal will occur and it is going to be pretty stable,” Mr Ofori-Atta stated, adding that, a total of $4.6 billion would be injected into the system before the second quarter of the year.
Mr. Ofori-Atta made this known to journalists in Accra on Wednesday, March 13, 2019, and indicated that, the government is expecting about $900 million funding for the COCOBOD and an additional $750 million bridge financing intended to cover the government’s short-term expenses.
“Today as we speak, we launched our Eurobond, which would officially be close to $3 billion,” Mr Ofori-Atta announced.
On claims claims by some international news portals that the cedi was the cheapest currency on the continent, Mr Ofori-Atta said the economy was doing well despite the recent depreciation of the cedi.
For instance, he said inflation was currently in a single digit while growth stood at six per cent. He said it was not healthy for Ghanaians to repeat the statement that the cedi was the cheapest on the continent, adding that “the truth of the matter is to look at the fundamentals.”