Accra Swallows Up Ghana

…as 88% of domestic taxes are provided from the capital region

Greater Accra Provides 88.83% Of Ghana’s Domestic Taxes while the rest of the Other Regions (now 15)  Account For a paltry 4.03%.

According to a domestic revenue contributions chart, between 2018 and 2021, the average contribution of regions to domestic tax wa 92.86% and Greater Accra alone accounted for 88.83%

Ashanti accounted for 1.24%, Western, 1.42%, Eastern o.42%, Brong Ahafo, 0.20%, Volta, 0.12%, Northern 0.28%, Upper East 0.6% and Upper West 0.4%

Nii Amu Darko, President of ARM, calls the ratio “a disgrace” to the country and its government.

“Over the 4year period, the average contribution by regions to domestic tax was 92.86% of the total. GAR alone contributed 88.83%, and rest of the country only 4.03%. 95.7% of domestic tax revenue by regions was collected in GAR alone. Ghana has shrunken into Accra. Ghana does not exist anymore.

“No country in the world, (not Somalia or Afghanistan) gets 96% of its domestic revenue from its capital. It is an absolute disgrace. Unfortunately, neither the President nor the ex-President (still collecting hisretirement benefits) but wants to be President again understands this data. Cry, the beloved country.”

In a write-up titled, “Cry The Beloved Country,’” Nii points out that  96% of domestic revenue comes from Accra, 66.4% of all internal migration ends up In Accra, 61% of all microfinance is in Accra, 4 (the 3 regions in the North & Volta).

And out of 10 regions in a period of 6years (2012-2018) there was zero consumption growth, he adds, saying, “then there is something fundamentally wrong with the political and economic structure of the nation”

“How can a government divide regions (whose combined revenue is less than 1%) into more regions and bureaucracies that even their tax cannot pay for? What was the position of the alternative government? None. They were scared of electoral backlash. That is why I say, Cry, the beloved country.”

Nii however points out that the lopsided situation where Accra has become bigger than Ghana is a problem that is age-old and trace all the way back to the days of President Nkrumah

He culls portions of an  interaction between President Nkrumah and his Chief Economic Advisor, Sir Arthur Lewis to drive home the point. ‘’However, Lewis’s advisory work there was far from smooth sailing. He recalled an interesting dialogue with Nkrumah that took place in his sojourn at the government office of Ghana. When a draft of Ghana’s Development Plan was completed, Nkrumah told Lewis that he was planning to allocate 50% of the budget to the capital, Accra, which had only 5% of the total population of Ghana. According to Lewis’s account, Nkrumah said, “Why not? When you think of England, you think of London; when you think of France you think of Paris; when you think of Russia, you think of Moscow.” Lewis replied, “No, sir. When I think of England, I do not think of London because I live in Manchester, and this is also why I know that capital cities exploit the rest of the country” (Lewis 1967, p. 16). Given the fact that Manchester was the place where the 1945 Pan-African Congress that strongly featured the presence of Nkrumah was held, it is evident that the above remark of Lewis was downright sarcastic.’’

Pointing out that the cause of the situation is not the 1992 Constitution, he writes that the new constitution only enforces a longstanding problem. And he advocates that a new constitution is what will cure the problem.

“My call for a new constitution for the past two decades is not based on the corruption, incompetence & arrogance of the Siamese twins but rather on the dysfunctionality of the enabling 1992 constitution.

“The fatally flawed structure of the state that Nkrumah tried to create in his image still lingers on in this Santa constitution. It must be uprooted, utterly destroyed, and cremated.

“The problem is diagnosed, and it is the one-party government in unitary Ghana as enshrined in the 1992 Constitution, the lite version of the one-party state constitution of 1964. The solution is multiparty government in ecofed Ghana as espoused in Afremocracy–democracy brewed in the African pot.”

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