Prime News Ghana

COVID-19: Ken Ofori-Atta hints of an unemployment benefit programme

By Mutala Yakubu
Ken Ofori-Atta
Ken Ofori-Atta
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Minister for Finance Ken Ofori-Atta has hinted that government could introduce an unemployment benefit programme.

This comes after lots of workers were either laid off or have been left redundant due to COVID-19.

Mr Ofori-Atta speaking on Joy News said the initiative could be introduced by the government to ease the burden on many who are currently left with no option than to stay home.

READ ALSO: Ken Ofori Atta to present mid-year budget in July

"I think something like this should happen, maybe this is the time to make the bold move for things of that nature. So that everyone is taken care of so that the issue of unemployment will be catered for. So this becomes things that have to come in the Mid-year to a certain degree, but more importantly the revitalization programme that we want to drive."

Finance Minister Ken Ofori Atta is expected to present the mid-year budget review and supplementary estimates for the financial year this month.

According to Parliament’s Majority Leader, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, the Finance Minister will use the opportunity to explain how the government intends to replenish advances it took from the contingency fund and the stabilisation fund due to the COVI-19 pandemic, which has affected the economy badly.

In April, Parliament granted a request by government to withdraw an amount of GH₵1.2bn, equivalent to US$219m, from the contingency fund to finance the Coronavirus Alleviation Programme (CAP).

Government also received a US$1bn rapid credit facility from the IMF, part of which is being used to provide an electricity relief package for Ghanaians. The rest will go into supporting the 2020 budget.