Mr Isaac Adongo, Member of Parliament (MP) for Bolgatanga Central, has labelled the 2019 budget presented to Parliament by the Finance Minister as hollow.
He said it was only “high on English but little in substance” and did not give confidence to the people.
He added that it was going to bring hardship to Ghanaians.
The MP said this in his reaction to the budget after it had been read by Mr. Ken Ofori-Atta.
The government has targeted to grow the economy by 7.6 percent in 2019, achieve single-digit inflation of 8 percent, fiscal deficit of 4.2 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and primary surplus of 1.2 percent of GDP.
Mr Adongo, however, was unimpressed and said the budget statement was full of public relations gimmick.
He took issue with what he alleged was the government’s decision to borrow about GH¢14.6 billion, out of which GH¢8.5 billion would be going into infrastructure and the rest of GH¢6.1billion consumption.
The MP questioned the rationale for allocating such huge amount of money into consumption instead channelling the funds into production to generate interest on investment.
What that meant was that “we are borrowing to pay salaries and goods”.
Mr. Kweku Kwarteng, a Deputy Minister of Finance, debunked the claims of MP for Bolgatanga, terming them as false.
“A lot of the things that Mr Adongo just said are untrue and it is because he has not read the budget. If he had read he would not be saying these things.”
Mr Kwarteng said the allocation to capital expenditure in the budget was GH¢12.8 billion and not the GH¢8.5 billion as alleged by Mr Adongo.
He said what the Akufo-Addo Administration inherited was an economy that had been sent to the International Monetary Fund to obtain policy credibility for bailout.
The ruling NPP since it took over the management of the economy had put it back on track and was going to wean it off the IMF programme by the end of next month.
Mr Kwarteng gave the assurance that the government would continue with its social intervention programmes and to also clean-up the banking sector.
It would stick to its pursuit of macro-economic stabilization to consolidate the gains made.