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General News Wed, 27 Nov 2002

Prosecute Finance, Senior Minister & Governor - Dan Lartey

The Great Consolidated Popular Party (GCPP) on Wednesday called on the government to prosecute members the Economic Management Team for causing financial loss to the state over outcome of the controversial International Financial Consortium (IFC) loan.

"The Economic Management Team has failed, cost the nation a huge financial loss and exposed their gross incompetence in international financial transactions and must account for it," Mr Dan Lartey told the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in an unsolicited telephone call after the government's withdrawal from the International Financial Consortium loan negotiations.

Yaw Osafo-Maafo, Minister of Finance on Tuesday told Parliament that Government had come to the conclusion that it would be in the national interest not to pursue further discussions and negotiations in respect of the IFC loan approved by Parliament on July 12, 2002.

Lartey also called on the Finance Minister, Governor of Bank of Ghana, Dr Paul Acquah and the Senior Minister, Mr Joseph Henry Mensah to resign and apologise to the nation. "If they fail to act honourably, the government must give meaning to the concept of "zero tolerance for corruption", and fire them as well as put them before the Fast Track Court for causing financial loss to the state," the GCPP Leader stated.

He challenged the Economic Management Team to tell Ghanaians how much the nation spent on the transactions - travelling fares, hotel accommodation, allowances for officials who were involved in the transaction and any other monetary expenditure the state incurred.

Lartey also urged the government to reshuffle the Economic Management Team, "as the current team is not capable of leading the nation out of the economic difficulties".

The Finance Minister told Parliament that no payment was made in advance, the sovereign guarantee was neither issued to the Consortium nor to any member of the Consortium by the government and that the honour of the country was not in any way been compromised.

Osafo-Maafo said the implication of the decision was that the additional resources the Government sought to find to assist with quick improvement of infrastructure development was no more available to the country under the terms of the loan.

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Source: GNA
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