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26.07.2005 Business & Finance

HIPC fund infused with 1,992.9 billion cedis


Accra, July 26, GNA - Ghana is expecting an amount of 1,992.9 billion cedis as benefits accruing the Highly Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) relief set-up in 2005.

The benefits, which are made up of various debts relief amounts from creditors, are meant to be an additional budgetary support for programmes and activities linked to targets set under the Millennium Development Goals.

These came to light when the House adopted a report of the Committee of the Whole on the Utilisation of HIPC funds for 2005. Alhaji Malik Yakubu, Second Deputy Speaker and Chairman of the Committee, said four main areas were identified for the utilisation of the Fund.

He said 398 billion was to be used for Domestic Debt Interest Payment; 1,195 billion cedis for Sectoral programmes and activities; 199 billion cedis for distribution to District Assemblies while 199.3 billion cedis go into a contingency fund.

According to him, the Committee appreciated the idea of submitting the HIPC fund and its utilisation to the House for scrutiny and approval.

It said that practice would enable the House to exercise its authority over the public purse and ensure transparency in public expenditure allocations.

He said the Committee observed that HIPC relief resources were restricted to specific programmes and activities mostly linked to poverty reduction.

It urged members to monitor the utilisation of the resources in their respective districts and constituencies to ensure that funds were judiciously disbursed in support of the intended projects. The Committee of the Whole is the meeting of Parliament behind closed doors.