I’m sorry for economic hardship – Ofori-Atta to Ghanaians
Mr Ken Ofori-Atta, the Finance Minister, has apologised to Ghanaians for the current economic hardship the nation is facing.
“Co-Chairs, let me use this opportunity to say to Ghanaians what I believe every finance minister around the world may like to say to their people now – ‘I’m truly sorry’,” Mr Ofori-Atta said on Friday.
Giving his testimony before the Parliamentary Ad-hoc Committee on Censure at the Parliament House in Accra, he said: “When we set out so purposely between 2017 and the early part 2020, we never imagined that a global pandemic such as COVID-19 with its prolonged economic fall will inflict such pain and suffering upon the Ghanaian people.”
The Committee was set up by the Speaker to probe the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Minority Caucus’ Motion calling for a vote of censure against the finance minister for mismanagement of the economy.
Mr Ofori-Atta said the shocks to the nation’s system had been hard and the impact on livelihood of Ghanaians severe.
“But we have not been resting on our oars, we continue to work to keep the lights on, to avoid the queues at our filling stations as in other countries, our classrooms are full, our hospitals and dispensaries have been stocked with drugs,” he said.
Since the Akufo-Addo Government came into office in 2017, everything they had sought to do was aimed at making the lives of the people better, the Finance Minister said.
They had focused on that vision to improve lives in the first four years and their efforts were leading to the realisation of that vision.
“Today, I acknowledge our economy is facing difficulties and the people of Ghana are enduring hardships,” Mr Ofori-Atta said.
“As the person, President Akufo-Addo has put in charge of the economy, I feel the pain personally, professionally, and in my soul.”
“I see and feel the terrible impact of the rising prices of goods and services on the lives and livelihoods of ordinary Ghanaians.”
“I feel the stress of running a business. But it is the strength and perseverance of the Ghanaian people that inspire me and my colleagues in government every morning, to press on.”
He said that was what gave him the strength to press on to find solutions and relief for Ghanaians to the myriad of problems the country and the rest of the world faced.