Our outstanding debts remain unsettled-Fertilizer suppliers challenge Finance Minister

Finance Minister; Ken Ofori Atta

Fertilizers Suppliers under Government Flagship Programme Planting for Food and Job are asking the Finance Minister, Hon. Ken Ofori Atta to be clear with his presentation over payment of money to the Ministry of Food and Agriculture for some outstanding debts.

They expressed reservations when the Minister claimed to have released an amount of 278.57 million to the Ministry of Food and Agriculture as part of GHC 485.90 million the ministry asked to sustain the programme this year.

The Minister on the floor of parliament on Wednesday when asked about the issue of Financial Clearance to MOFA to clear the large debt owed partners and suppliers revealed that his ministry had released money to clear outstanding debts.

“Mr. Speaker at the end of 2021 an amount of GHC 86.31 million was outstanding under PFJ Programme. This amount has now been released to MOFA for payment. This year, MOFA has requested for an amount of GHC 485.90 million for payment under PFJ programme. An amount of GHC 278.57 million has subsequently been released to
MOFA” Hon. Ken Ofori –Atta has added.

However, these owed partners and suppliers have said that since 2021 they have not received payment and some arears in 2020 from the implementing ministry. The Suppliers also lamented that their respective Banks have been chasing them after the Minister’s presentation on the floor of Parliament because these banks think; they (Suppliers) have diverted the payment to different accounts.

‘’We are a bit confused over the Finance Minister’s presentation so we are demanding a explanation. Where has the money he claimed he has released gone to?” One supplier rhetorically asked Sampson Kwame Nyamekye in an interview.

“How would we still drag government for our monies when the Finance Ministry claims to have released an amount to clear the outstanding debts… there are inconsistencies in his presentation so we are urging him to make things  clearer for us because the Banks are chasing us for their monies too” One supplier added.

Some of the contractors hinted that per their checks at the Controller and Accounts Department, no money has been released for their debts.

Sampson Kwame Nyamekye in an earlier report last month, interviewed a number of Fertilizer suppliers who confirmed that government still owes them monies after supplying farmers under PFJ fertilizers.

Peasant framers had also in a separate story expressed worry over how the scarcity of fertilizers has been affecting their farming businesses since suppliers are reluctant to supply them fertilizers.

Planting for Food and Jobs is a flagship agricultural Campaign of the Government, with five (5) implementation modules. The first module PFJ (Crops) aims to promote food security and immediate availability of selected food crops on the market and also provide jobs.

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