by;brightwebtv/nana sare bariaa
Finance Minister, Ken Ofori Atta a few days ago told Parliament that all outstanding funds for Planting for Food and Jobs for 2021 had been released.
The minister who was responding to a question about the issue of Financial Clearance to MOFA to clear the large debt owed partners and suppliers, revealed that his ministry has already released money to clear outstanding debts.
“Mr. Speaker, at the end of 2021 an amount of GH¢86.31 million was outstanding, under the PFJ programme. This amount has now been released to MOFA for payment. This year, MOFA has requested an amount of GHC 485.90 million for payment under PFJ programme. An amount of GHC 278.57 million has subsequently been released to MOFA,” Ken Ofori-Atta said on the floor of Parliament.
Suppliers of Fertiliser Unhappy
But Fertilizers Suppliers under government’s flagship Planting for Food and Jobs programme dared the Financial Minister to be clear with his presentation over payment of money to the Ministry of Food and Agriculture for some outstanding debts.
They expressed reservations over his presentations especially, the sector Minister’s claim that an amount of 278.57 million has been released to the MoFA. these owed partners and suppliers insist for over a year now they have not received payment and some payment are even in arrears since 2020 from the implementing ministry.
Finance Minister Misquoted
Addressing this contentious issue, the Minister for Food and Agriculture, Dr Owusu Afriyie Akoto in a one-on-one interview on Peace FM’s morning show ‘Kokrokoo‘ said the Finance Minister was misquoted and that the money rather went to the Controller and Accountant General.
“The Minister was misquoted. It is not true that the funds were released to the Ministry of Agriculture. It was released to the Controller and Accountant General to release to MoFA but that’s not the money we’ve received. There was a misquotation; the Minister should have been quoted as saying the amount of money has been released to the Controller and Accountant General because we don’t receive money directly from the Ministry of Finance. We get it upon his instruction to the Controller,” he pointed out.
The failure of the government to pay fertilizer suppliers has made the majority of these contractors face bankruptcy forcing their banks to chase them for their monies.
Listen to him in the video below