Ghana @50 Inquiry, Wake Up Call For Public Servants - Benyiwa-Doe

Ms Ama Benyiwa-Doe, Central Regional Minister, on Monday said revelations at the on-going Ghana @50 Inquiry, should served as wake up call for public servants. She said they should see it as “food-for-thought and wake up call” for them to ensure competence, accountability and probity in their duties and responsibilities. Mrs Benyiwa-Doe made the remarks when she opened a day’s workshop on public financial management for District Co-ordinating Directors, Finance and Budget Officers and heads of Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAS) in the region. The Ghana Audit Service, Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning, Accountant Generals Department, the Internal Audit Agency and the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development with support from DANIDA jointly organised the workshop. It was to review the findings of the Auditor-General’s report on central and local government financial processes. Ms Benyiwa-Doe said it was unfortunate that due to fear of superiors, most administrators and financial managers lacked the courage to provide advice on sound administrative and financial management practices needed to propel economic growth and development. She noted that funds allocated by government and the country’s development partners to Regional Co-ordinating Council and the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) were mostly to reduce poverty and should therefore be managed efficiently. Ms Benyiwa-Doe expressed concern that previous reviews and evaluations revealed among others, many lapses such as inadequate cash management and contract records, delayed execution of contracts, difficulty in accounting for the use of imprest issued, and absence of contract certification, particularly with MMDAs and improper stock and assets accounting. She urged participants to be guided by the principles of legality, fairness and accountability and as professionals, helped redeem their “fast sinking image” and ensure the effective and efficient use of the country’s limited resources. Mr Cudjoe Nani Quarshie, Regional Auditor said, the workshop was timely because it was being held at a time that the world was facing global economic recession which has reduced Ghana’s foreign remittances. This, he said, posed a challenge to the country to urgently enforce strict fiscal discipline that would facilitate prudent public funds management by all entities that depended on the public treasury.