General News of 2013-12-22

Deputy Minister, IMANI President clash over World Bank report

A heated debate between Ibrahim Murtala Mohammed, a Deputy Minister of Information and Media Relations, and President of IMANI Ghana Franklin Cudjoe, last Thursday, was near fisticuffs on Tv3’s Agenda programme.

The two had been discussing issues surrounding the recent appraisal of ministers of state by the presidency.

In his remarks, Mr Cudjoe complained that the exercise is a duplication of the role of the presidency as the Monitoring and Evaluation Unit is already been crying for work.

He continued that no amount of appraisal will right the wrongs if the proper structures are not put in place, citing that the World Bank has pinpointed Ghana as incurring an annual budget deficit of $10 million.

The citing of the World Bank to downgrade government’s effort at improving productivity did not go down well with the Deputy Minister, who challenged Mr Cudjoe to google the report from the Bank. For Ibrahim Murtala, the World Bank is not any extraordinary body and that it drafts its report based on information given it by locals and to him government is on track.

Pulling a tablet computer, the President of IMANI Ghana retrieved a June, 2010 GNA article, which claimed that Ghana needs $2.5 billion annually to address its infrastructure deficit.

“This has embarrassed you the more. It has made your case more serious,” the Deputy Minister directed his comments at Mr Cudjoe, who questioned the composition of the panel for the programme.

Mr Cudjoe said things must be done right by government “so that we don’t come and sit here all the time discussing these issues and this gentleman here will be heading me”.