Dr John Kumah, a Deputy Minister for Finance, has debunked allegations by the Minority in Parliament that the Bank of Ghana has printed GH¢22 billion notes for the country without approval from Parliament.
He said the stated amount is an overdraft advanced by the Bank to the government and there was nothing illegal about it.
Dr Cassiel Ato Forson, the Minority spokesperson on Finance, on Monday accused the Governor of the Bank of Ghana (BoG) of printing more currency for the country without approval from Parliament.
The former Deputy Finance Minister said the BoG and government had perpetuated illegality which must be dealt with.
He said: “Between January and June 2022, the Minister responsible for Finance and the government went to the Central Bank, and they encouraged the BoG to print money worth GH¢22 billion.”
“They have printed GH¢22 billion fresh money without the knowledge of Parliament and without informing all of us,” he said.
According to Dr Forson, this was hidden on page 97 of Appendix 2a of the Mid-year Budget under the section on Bank of Ghana.
However, at a Press Conference organised by the Majority in Parliament on Tuesday, Dr Kumah debunked the allegations.
“If you read section 30 of the Bank of Ghana Act, it is within the remit of the law for the Bank of Ghana to grant overdrafts and support to the Central government without printing money,” he said.
Dr Forson first made the allegation on Monday and repeated the same on the floor of Parliament on Tuesday when he commented on the Mid-year Budget Review presented by Mr Ken Ofori-Atta, the Finance Minister, where he blamed the rising inflation rate on that measure by the Central Bank.
“Mr Speaker, in the 2020 budget, the project was that the government was going to take zero amounts from the Central Bank only for us to see that between January to June 2022, this administration has taken GH¢22 billion from the Central Bank of Ghana.
“When the Bank of Ghana gives money to the government it is called printing of money and that is unacceptable,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Bank of Ghana has denied the claim, saying the amount of GH¢22.04 billion represented net claims on government and not new currency printed to support the government’s budget.