Majority Leader, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, says President Akufo-Addo did not categorically say he will dismiss Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, and Minister of State at the Finance Ministry, Charles Adu Boahen, after the IMF negotiations and 2023 Budget reading and appropriation.
“The President did not say that. To quote his words, he said ‘let’s finish with this, the IMF and the budget thereafter, we should hold on until after these’,” he said on JoyNews’ PM Express.
Some 80 New Patriotic Party MPs had demanded the immediate dismissal of the Finance Minister.
According to them, the continuous stay of Ken Ofori-Atta in office was delaying the IMF bailout the country is seeking due to the fact that the Minister has lost all credibility.
They had thus petitioned the President to either remove him or face a boycott in Parliament.
The President had, however, appealed to them for more time for the embattled Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta to conclude negotiations with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) before any talks of resignation.
Documents available to JoyNews suggest a deal could be reached with the IMF in three weeks for a $3 billion balance of payment support.
This, the President believes, could be disrupted if Ken Ofori-Atta is sacked or forced to resign.
According to Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, while the President’s statement is open for interpretation, he had not categorically stated that he would sack the Finance Minister and the Minister of State at the Finance Ministry.
“It could be. I mean, either of them is subject to interpretations that ‘okay hold on after the events then we come back and discuss,’ or ‘hold on after the event I will act.’
“’I will act’ may not necessarily mean that ‘I will do that’. According to what the President told us, you hold on until…so it could be that ‘I’ll come back to consider it’ or ‘I’ll give in to your demands’,” he said.
“The plea was hold on until after these events, the IMF discussions and the budget. In fact I even added when there appeared to be some unclarity about what happens after the presentation of the budget, I said no if the budget is presented by a person, you’d require that same person to shepherd the appropriations.
“And that is how come for the avoidance of doubt I said let us include the appropriation so that there’s no doubt in anybody’s mind that after the budget has been read then agitations will start again,” he added.
Meanwhile, he has indicated that the MPs are still being engaged on the matter.
“We’ll continue to engage and I believe we’ll find an amicable resolution to this.”