Finance Prof. bemoans spate of project abandonment: advises Parliament to enact law to stop the trend

Finance Prof. bemoans spate of project abandonment: advises Parliament to enact law to stop the trend

A professor at the finance department of the University of Cape Coast John Gatsi is proposed the development of Article 35(7) into an Act of Parliament.

 Article 35(7) of the 1992 Constitution reads; “As far as practicable, a government shall continue and execute projects and programmes commenced by previous governments.”

Prof. John Gatsi believes developing the provision into a standalone Act of Parliament holds to ending the fast growing trend of new governments choosing to abandon projects began by their predecessor in favour of new ones.

The Nana Akufo-Addo led administration has been accused of abandoning several projects started by its predecessor John Mahama administration including already completed ones at huge costs to the nation.

Prof. Gatsi believes these concerns can be addressed by an Act of Parliament which requires newly elected governments to, within their first nine months in office, submit to Parliament for approval a comprehensive report and justification on projects, policies and programmes it wishes to discontinue for debate and approval or disapproval.

He is further proposing the new Act also entails a requirement for the creation of a publicly accessible National Contract and Projects Management Register.

The register according to UCC Finance Professor should have details of contracts and projects such as cost, location, execution time, date of commencement and level of execution as way of deepening good governance and transparency.

He described as worrying, the prevailing trend of key national infrastructural projects and programs being abandoned because they were not initiated by the government in power.

Prof John Gatsi believes the current trend only leads to loss of value for money and financial loss as government is forced to pay huge interests on the loans secured for these projects without its attendant benefits.

He said the abandoned projects end up not achieving the anticipated improvements in the socio-economic conditions of the people hence deepening the current cycle of poverty and poor infrastructure.

The Finance Professor reminded political parties and government that even though macroeconomic indicators such as GDP, inflation and exchange rate are important, the focus should be on the standards set out in Article 36 (1) if they want to ensure that the dividends for good economic governance are enjoyed by the citizens.

Story: Sena Nombo/Radiogoldlive.com

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