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03.03.2006 General News

Subvented Agencies Bill passed

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Accra, March 3, GNA - Parliament on Friday passed the Subvented Agencies Bill. The object of the bill is to establish a legislative mechanism through which the dependence of institutions and agencies in the public sector on government subvention can be reduced.

A memorandum accompanying the bill said one of the objectives of government was to reduce poverty and promote sustained growth and development.

It said to achieve this the private sector must be made the channel for development and to this end, public sector institutions must be restructured to reduce their dependence on public financing thus making public funds available for growth and development.

The memorandum said in order to see the enormity of the financial burden on government, "it might be useful to state here that in 2004 an amount of 2,597.2 billion cedis, excluding payment to the Ghana Education Service, was paid by way of subvention."

"In 2005, the amount was 3,993.0 billion cedis. Of the annual subvention, 75 to 96 percent goes into staff salaries. It is clearly imperative that government makes it possible for the private sector to be the employer of the number of the workforce," it said.

The bill would also address the monitoring and evaluation of the operations of subvented agencies, which appears diffused and spread between various ministries, the Public Services Commission, Ministry of Finance and other central management agencies. "The bill makes the Minister responsible for the respective agency responsible for monitoring the agency," the memorandum added.