Minority: Enko Yie Budget
The Minority in Parliament on Wednesday gave several names to the 2010 Annual Budget presented by Dr. Kwabena Duffuor, Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, as a way of registering their displeasure with the government's economic policies.
While some of them described it as "Enko Yie," literally meaning "it is not going well," "Eko Nyaa" meaning "it is going slowly" and "Yewuo" budget, meaning "we are dying," others described it as "Team B," "Sakawa Two" and the "Extension of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Manifesto" into the House of Parliament.
These issues manifested when the Ghana News Agency interviewed some minority members to find out their reactions to the Minister's presentation.
Miss Cecilia Abena Dapaah, New Patriotic Party (NPP) member for Bantama, said the budget was "uninspiring" and therefore could not take Ghanaians out of illiteracy and poverty by 2015.
She said the Minister's failure to mention crucial issues such as housing, water and health was endangering the industrialization programme since every industrialized nation should be able to boast of basic needs such as food, shelter, and water.
"For me this budget cannot lead us to achieve our Millennium Development Goals and I therefore cannot see any light at the end of the tunnel."
Mrs Gifty Eugenia Kusi, NPP Member for Tarkwa/Nsuaem, said she was happy that the NDC was continuing with some of the programmes of the NPP administration adding that it was a demonstration that the NDC government had no ideas to start new programmes.
She said she was disappointed that nothing concrete was mentioned of the school feeding programme, capitation grant and social interventions for the poor, children and deprived in society.
Mr Godfrey Bayong Tangu, NPP Member for Wa East, said the budget had demonstrated that the NDC government had no ruling style and was therefore depending on ad hoc programmes which could not release the country from perpetual hunger and poverty.
He said as social democrats, the NDC Government needed to initiate social interventions devoid of international funding in order not to derail their programmes anytime funding was stopped.
Mr Tangu said developing key areas such as education, health, roads and hospitals were very instrumental to the total development of the country and therefore should be seriously pursued.
Mr. Joseph Boahen Aidoo, NPP Member for Amenfi East, said the government's desire to mine iron ore in the Oppong Maase Valley was untenable as the project needed not less than one billion dollars to commence which the government could not provide.
He called on the government to concentrate on fixing the economy rather than using propaganda to score cheap political points.
"The NPP left office with a GDP rate of 7.3 per cent only for the NDC government to reduce it to 4.7 per cent and I wonder if they can achieve their target of eight per cent next year."
Mr. Hackman Owusu Agyemang, NPP Member for New Juaben, described the budget as the extension of the manifesto of the NDC which could not give any meaning to the suffering masses in the country.