Akufo Addo’s cousin Ken Ofori Atta who is the finance minister has justified the construction of the National Cathedral after indicating that the Lord will understand “if we put our widows mite in there.”
He said Ghanaians shouldn’t snuff out their religiousness or spirituality because “we are poor”.
The government received flak for the ¢25million seed capital released for the construction of the project.
For instance, North Tongu Member of Parliament, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa questioned the decision to release the funds in the midst of economic challenges.
In Mr Ablakwa’s view, the funds could have been used to pay trainees under the Nation Builders Corps (NABCO) programme, school feeding caterers and also service personnel.
A letter dated 31st March and written to the Controller and Accountant General Department (CAGD) by the Minister of Finance Ken Ofori Atta said “Authority is hereby granted to release the sum of 25million Ghana Cedis as additional seed money to the National Cathedral Secretariat for the construction of the National for part payment of the outstanding claim from RIBADE.”
But in a tweet reacting to this, Mr Ablakwa said “Considering the current debilitating economic crisis, why is the Akufo-Addo govt releasing a colossal GHS25million for the National Cathedral project? Shockingly, this is the same govt claiming lack of funds to pay NABCo trainees, School feeding caterers, service personnel, the 3-year no-textbooks-syndrome, etc.
Speaking on Ghaha Television (GTV) on Sunday June 12, Mr Ken Ofori-Atta said “At any point in time when these buildings were built in Europe, was it ever the right time? How do we fund it will become the question.
“Is the executive mindful of the current situation? We shouldn’t snuff out our religiousness or spirituality because we are poor. The Lord will understand if we put our widows mite in there.”
“That question being asked is that are we spending money from state coffers? Is that too much to do because we are politicizing it. Do we really want to stop it? That is going to be my question,” he added.