Finance Ministry to blame for delay in paying contractors

The Ghana Education Trust Fund (GETFund) has attributed the delay in the payment of contractors to the Ministry of Finance.

According to GETFund, the government is owing contractors to the tune of about GH¢300 million and the delay in the payments must be blamed on the ministry.

Managers of the fund made the disclosure after the contractors threatened to embark on a demonstration at the Flagstaff House, the seat of government, to press home their demands for their monies.



According to the contractors, the inability of the government, through the ministry to pay the various amounts owed, was adversely affecting their businesses, adding that most of them were using bank loans with high interest rates to pre-finance their various projects.

A Deputy Administrator for GETFund, Stephen Baffoe, said that until the Ministry of Finance releases the money to the fund, there was no way the aggrieved contractors could be paid what is due them.

“It is true that some contractors have worked and their claims have been processed for six months or more. The Ministry of Finance has to release funds for the GETFund to be able to pay.”

Mr. Baffoe explained that the GETFund cannot release funds on its own as “it depends on 2.5 percent VAT that is credited to the Ghana Revenue Authority, accounted to the Ministry of Finance and released by the Ministry of Finance to all statutory fund receivers, including the GETFund.”

“All we are waiting for is the Ministry of Finance to release the monies owed the GETFund from July up to the end of October. We are looking at between GH¢280 million and GH¢300 million,” he added.

In 2014, members of the Getfund Contractors Association threatened to lock up all school buildings they had constructed if government failed to pay their outstanding arrears for work done.

 

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