I was battered and broken.. – Ofori-Atta reacts to #KenMustGo

Ken Ofori-Atta, the Finance Minister, expressed his deep disappointment and sadness during the period when demands were made for President Nana Akufo-Addo to either fire him or for him to resign from his role. In an exclusive interview with GTV on August 6, Mr. Ofori-Atta shared that he felt emotionally and mentally strained during the protests, but he felt a strong sense of duty to remain in his position and work towards the recovery of the country’s struggling economy.

“In the period of censure, in which Parliament then voted against it, but more importantly, you were in a situation where you were battered and broken.

“And do not leave a ship at that time, and given the urgency of ensuring the IMF programme will get through, for me it was a duty to serve, and there was no running away from it,” Mr Ofori-Atta said.

He emphasized that during such challenging times, only those who are bold and courageous choose to stay and face the difficulties head-on. He mentioned that leaving his position at that critical juncture was not an option, particularly given the urgency of securing the IMF program to support economic stability.

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Despite the calls for his dismissal within the democratic framework of the country, he recognized that it was within the rights of individuals to demand his removal as a public official.

Mr. Ofori-Atta acknowledged that the year 2022 was the toughest period of his tenure as Ghana’s Finance Minister. He revealed that he had to make incredibly tough but necessary decisions to steer the Ghanaian economy towards recovery, including seeking assistance from the International Monetary Fund (IMF). He explained that external factors such as the Covid-19 pandemic and the Russia-Ukraine conflict influenced this decision.

“Mr Speaker, 2022 was the most difficult year for me as Ghana’s Finance Minister. On July 1st, 2022, we took what was then a very difficult but necessary decision to request support from the IMF to implement our Post-COVID-19 Programme of Economic Growth (PC-PEG).

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“The country was going through a dire period of economic uncertainties and despondency.”

In 2022, the Finance Minister faced criticism from various quarters, including some members of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) who attributed the country’s economic challenges to his perceived underperformance. The National Democratic Congress also initiated a motion to remove him from his position, citing reasons like incompetence and conflicts of interest. Amidst the motion to remove him, the Majority members staged a walkout.

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