The Minister of Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, has slammed the Minority in Parliament for their call on the Auditor General to audit the GHC280.3million government spent on food and other relief packages under the Coronavirus Alleviation Program (COP).
The Minority at a press conference called on the Auditor General to probe the use of the money fearing the ruling party has channelled the funds into their campaign for the upcoming polls.
“The low coverage and haphazard implementation of these interventions during the lockdown period, specifically the distribution of free hot meals and dry food to the vulnerable, as well as the supply of tankers of water to deprived households, give us cause for concern that these funds were not judiciously utilised by the government,” Minority Spokesperson on Finance Casiel Ato Forson said at the Press conference.
He stated that a special audit into government’s expenditure under the Coronavirus Alleviation Programme was imperative given media reports that state-sponsored COVID relief items meant for the vulnerable, are being sold in the market by functionaries of the ruling New Patriotic Party in Kumasi and other parts of the country.
But addressing the Press on Thursday, Oppong Nkrumah stated that it was premature for the minority to make such a call since the fight against the COVID-19 is still ongoing and several interventions are still being put in place by the government.
According to him, the Minority is only seeking to distract the government on the COVID-19 fight as the pandemic is approaching a critical stage.
“It will be prudent for all of these exercises to be completed and the accounts will be put together for the auditor general to do his standard audit, and if he believes there is a reason to go further to do a special audit, he may go further.
“The COVID-19 intervention is ongoing, you are all here because the COVID-19 is ongoing…within that context we can all understand how premature that petition is…as we have always said it is becoming clear that our colleagues in the minority are always looking for some controversy to distract us from this COVID-19 but we will not be distracted.”