FINANCE MINISTER, Ken Ofori-Atta, has announced a recruitment freeze for the public sector next year.
He has also banned officials of Government Ministries, Department and Agencies (MDAs); Municipal, Metropolitan and District Assemblies (MMDAs) as well as State-Owned Enterprises (SOEs) from using V8 and V6 vehicles within their catchment areas except for cross country purposes.
“Mr. Speaker, as a first step toward expenditure rationalisation, Government has approved the following directives which takes effect from January, 2023: All MDAs, MMDAs and SOEs are directed to reduce fuel allocations to Political Appointees and heads of MDAs, MMDAs and SOEs by 50%. This directive applies to all methods of fuel allocation including coupons, electronic cards, chit system, and fuel depots.
“Accordingly, 50% of the previous years (2022) budget allocation for fuel shall be earmarked for official business pertaining to MDAs, MMDAs and SOEs; a ban on the use of V8s/V6s or its equivalent except for cross country travel; all government vehicles would be registered with GV green number plates from January 2023; limited budgetary allocation for the purchase of vehicles.
“For the avoidance of doubt, purchase of new vehicles shall be restricted to locally assembled vehicles; only essential official foreign travel across government including SOEs shall be allowed. No official foreign travel shall be allowed for board members,” the minister disclosed.
Accordingly, he said all government institutions should submit a travel plan for the year 2023 by mid-December of all expected travels to the Chief of Staff.
In addition to that, he said the government has also banned meetings outside agencies.
According to the minister, “As far as possible, meetings and workshops should be done within the official environment or government facilities,” adding “Government sponsored external training and Staff Development activities at the Office of the President, Ministries and SOEs must be put on hold for the 2023 financial year; the reduction of expenditure on appointments including salary freezes together with suspension of certain allowances like housing, utilities and clothing, etc.; and a hiring freeze for civil and public servants.”
Furtherance to that, he said there would be no new government agencies next year.
He added that, “No new government agencies shall be established in 2023.”
BY Ernest Kofi Adu