Minority advise government to rein in $1bn syndicated loan deal

General news for Friday, July 8, 2022

Source: www.ghanaweb.com

2022-07-08

John Jinpor

The minority in parliament has warned the government led by Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to refrain from doing more to get the House to approve a billion dollar syndicated loan.

Caucus member John Jinapor said his side will resist any attempt by the government to rush the approval process for loans like the controversial E-Levy.

“I think both the Majority and the Minority should take action and ask the Minister of Finance to withdraw this request. We have to go through all the processes, look at the true state of the economy, why we are in this mess, what we should be borrowing and exactly where we are applying those funds.

“Given the current circumstances and what they [Finance Ministry] gave is so opaque, not transparent and does not stand the test of time and I hope MPs on both sides will put the nation first,” Jinapor said.

He noted that, if the loan is approved, the government “will pay nearly $50 million as insurance and then pay about $1.75 million as arrangement or agency fees.”

Describing the loan facility as “terrible” and “unfriendly”, the former deputy energy minister said the loan should be withdrawn as soon as possible.

“Even worse is the fact that this government has guaranteed almost every source of revenue and is seeking to guarantee more, including our gold royalties under the dubious Agyapa Deal.

“In view of the above, we at the NDC cannot support the $1 billion syndicated loan agreement. We would like to notify in the future that the NDC in Parliament will not support any further borrowing or non-concessional lending that is not project specific,” he said.

The Ministry of Finance is seeking parliamentary approval for a $750 million loan facility agreement between AfreximBank and a $250 million loan agreement from a syndication of banks to fund capital and growth in the 2022 budget.

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