Government has assured of prudent use and efficient appropriation of the funds deposited into the COVID-19 Fund set up by the President to receive voluntary contributions to help fight Coronavirus.
The assurance was given by Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, Information Minister, who explained that the President, in an attempt to avoid misapplication of the resources, hold persons in charge accountable for the use of the funds.
This, he alluded, gives the Auditor General the right to audit the Fund once the whole programme has come to an end.
The Information Minister suggested that considering the calibre of person manning the office of Auditor-General, Ghanaians should be rest assured that the Fund will be put to good use and proper accounts rendered.
“If my memory serves me right, what we passed in Parliament, is a fund to receive resources and appropriate those resources for persons who are adversely affected by this COVID-19 pandemic. We will need to nuance it a bit more to know whether that can be used for the purchase of PPEs or whether or not it is to be used for those who are generally adversely affected.
“That is the reason for which HE the President asked a public Fund to be properly set up by an act of Parliament. Once you do that the State is ceased with all the necessary Financial management requirements in that act and most importantly Audit. So the Auditor-General is now ceased with that power to audit that account when they are done with this programme
“Even if that Auditor falls short in a place or two, there will be a legal process to challenge it in a very transparent manner o we should all be rest assured that it will be a private fund hiding somewhere, it will be a public audit exercise,” Kojo Oppong Nkrumah made known on Joy News.
The Fund is headed by former Chief Justice Sophia Akuffo and has other highly respected Ghanaians serving on it.
So far institutions and entities like the Lebanese community in Ghana, Hollard Insurance, and a host of others have donated to the Fund.
In the President’s address on Sunday, April 5, he disclosed that more than GHC8 million has been donated so far to the Fund.
The government has been exploring different ways to sustain the fight against the virus which has so far killed 2 in Ghana and infected about 214. The rest are responding to treatment.
The Finance Minister, last week, Monday, asked parliament to allow government dip its hands into the Heritage Fund under the Petroleum Revenue Management Act to utilise the resources in Ghana’s fight against the virus.
To halt the spread of the virus, there is a two-week lockdown in Greater Accra and Greater Kumasi, within which period enhanced surveillance and testing is being done.