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“Mr President Speak And Act Now” – AFAG Tells Akufo-Addo

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The Alliance for Accountable Governance (AFAG) has called on President Akufo-Addo to reassign Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta and Charles Adu Boahen, if he cannot sack them.

According to the Alliance, the two ministers have failed to curb the continuous depreciation of the Cedi.

In a press statement issued on Monday, they asked President Akufo-Addo to reassign the two immediately to salvage the situation.

“The Minister of Finance and the Minister of State at the Ministry, Ken Ofori Atta and Charles Adu Boahen must be reassigned,” they demanded.

Also, they have asked the President and the government to punish persons engaging in illegal forex trading.

According to AFAG, these persons are also contributing to the free fall of the Cedi.

“Some forex restrictions targeted at persons undermining the system need to be introduced, from the central bank through the commercial banks to the unlicensed forex operators,” excerpts of the statement demanded.

Meanwhile, the Governor of the Bank of Ghana (BoG) will on Tuesday meet managers of banks and operators of forex bureaux to address the depreciation of the cedi.

The meeting is also supposed to fix what the banks say is the overpricing of the dollar on the market.

The local currency has depreciated further to sell at ¢15.20 to one US dollar.

This is about 3.4% depreciation in less than a day, after trading on October 24, at ¢14.70.

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Information Minister, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah at an emergency news conference on Monday also outlined plans by the government to respond to the depreciation of the Ghanaian currency.

 

Read the full statement below 

 

 

Mr PRESIDENT, SPEAK & ACT NOW
The Alliance for Accountable Governance( AFAG) is a public interest advocacy group that shares a lot of centre-right positions on issues that are often in sync with the ideological philosophy of the New Patriotic Party( NPP). Over the years, AFAG has been quiet out of goodwill toward Government. However, given recent developments, we are forced to depart from our current position on national development.
Mr President, it is our considered opinion that the current speed of the cedi depreciation is borne out of the mischief of speculators and is purely artificial. Although it will reflect various challenges with the balance of payment due to post covid and Ukraine, there is some panic buying, a lack of confidence and a high degree of uncertainty in the financial market.
Mr President, there is a particular conspiracy theory that points to the central bank’s supervision of the forex market as weak. It is believed that high-placed persons in the central and commercial banks with profit motives auction dollars at an interbank rate, cheaper to the black markets, who then sell it on the market at very high speeds. It is also the belief that people in business in the subregions are contributing to the volatile situation by coming into Ghana to sell their currency and buy dollars for cheap in Ghana, and after that, sending it to their countries( where dollars are pretty expensive). Mr President, this is among others.
Mr President, also critical is the mass belief by Ghanaians that the minister of finance is doing very little to shore up confidence in the market. Nonetheless, but arguably so, there is a broad perception of him not doing much, coupled with his attack on the IMF. The finance minister believes that going to IMF has a dire effect on the economy and that Ghana won’t seek any support from the IMF. AFAG finds it inconsistent of him, therefore, to lead the IMF negotiations or remain in office now that the government is seeking a bailout.
Mr President, it is time to present an economic recovery plan to the nation. IMF intervention would not be enough to salvage the situation.
Over the period, you have not also addressed the country. We find this highly unusual based on how in the past, you have fostered cooperation from Ghanaians through your frequent addresses during the covid crisis. We will need you to reduce anxiety in the system and let Ghanaians know the “whys” and “hows”.
RESOLUTION:
● The minister of finance and the Minister of State at the Ministry, Ken Ofori Atta and Charles Adu Boahen must be reassigned
● some forex restrictions targeted at persons undermining the system, from the central bank through the commercial banks to the unlicensed forex operators
● investigate the banks and prosecute officials engaged in forex trading
● impose import restrictions on selected items
● engaging multinational companies and business ventures contributing to the capital flight.
● restricting the forex export to a certain level, at least in the next six months.
● Ensuring traders who export US dollars from Ghana annually have imported about an equal amount to the country.
● Encourage Ghanaians to understand why the current rates are artificial and how they will trade at a loss when the market settles, and the cedi benchmarks to the US Dollar at its real value.
Signed
AFAG LEADERSHIP

 

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