Nana Addo wonderfully came out against borrowing, arguing that the money is already in Ghana. Bawumia would hold public lectures to push the same agenda even harder, and it almost certainly garnered their votes in the 2016 general elections.
But, as they say, talking is the easiest way out, and this current government of the two listed above have borrowed more than any other government in this country’s history; In fact, records show that they have nearly doubled the debts they criticized.
A case of hypocrisy? Well, since that would be a measurement of a virtue and that, certainly has no place in our politics here in this part of the world, lets just take the phrase coined by Bawumia, the loudest and outspoken “economy transformation expert,” who manages the nation’s fragile economy to date, as he terms it as “smart borrowing.”
Well, the “smart borrowing” of the current Nana Addo led-government, have consistently seen meteoric rise, as Ghana’s total public debt stock has increased once again according to new data released by the Bank of Ghana.
The debt stock which ended the first quarter of 2021 at GH¢ 304.6 billion, increased by almost GH¢ 30 billion in April and May, as this saw Ghana’s total public debt as of the end of May 2021 rising to GH¢ 332.4.
The new debt figure brings Ghana’s debt to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) ratio to 76.6% as of the end of May. This is the highest recorded so far in the past year, slightly higher than the debt to GDP ratio of 76.1% recorded at the end of 2020 according to data from the central bank.
Interestingly, the component of the debt secured locally increased steadily in the first 5 months of 2021, when compared with the figure, recorded at the end of the first quarter, Ghana’s domestic debt rose by about GH¢ 7 billion, bringing total domestic debt to GH¢ 170.8 billion at the end of May this year from the GH¢163.6 billion recorded at the end of March this year.
The new figure represents 39.4% of the projected GDP for 2021. The domestic component of the total public debt contains the financial sector resolution bond, which was GH¢ 15.2 billion at the end of May 2021.
A breakdown of the debt numbers shows that the component of the debt secured outside the country after remaining relatively stable in the first quarter rose significantly by about GH¢ 20 billion from GH¢ 141 billion at the end of March 2021 to GH¢ 161.5 billion at the end of May this year.