capped resources. They have taken resources for GETFund, which were meant for something else.
Mr Speaker, my third difficulty with this particular formula that has been referred to earlier by Hon Members who spoke -- Mr Speaker, may I refer to page 3 of your Committee's Report. This is what we have -- tertiary education, GH¢255,500,000.00; secondary education, GH¢242,019,149.00; and basic education, GH¢222,755,000.00.
Mr Speaker, again, precedent and practice; what has been the practice in this august House? I hold the GETFund formula for 2015. In every formula, there is detailed provision of how much goes where, in terms of amount. The reason being that, for instance, if we allocate GH¢20 million to the University of Ghana, GH¢10 million to the University for Development Studies (UDS), GH¢32 million to the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, approved by Parliament, then the institutions know how much to expect as allocation from the GETFund resources.
Mr Speaker, if we just come here for an envelope approval - GH¢255,500,000.00, we would now give discretion to an Hon Minister or the National Council for Tertiary Education; that would be wrong and unacceptable. This is because, this House is appropriating the GETFund resources for them. So, we should have details.
Mr Speaker, I refer to appendix 5 of the 2015 GETFund Formula. We would see the attachment there -- Ghana Library Board, GH¢1.5 million; monitoring development projects, GH¢1 million; public education and information; United Nations Education, Social and Cultural Organisa- tion (UNESCO) Office; and Best Teacher Award. Then we know that, to each of
these institutions, this is how much they should expect from the GETFund.
They only come here to say we should approve percentages. When has this House been reduced to approving percentages for GETFund or any other Fund? We need the fine details in order that, tomorrow, we can ask for accountability from the institutions to which these moneys are allocated. In 2014 and 2015, that was done. It is only in 2017 that we have these new ways of doing things.
Mr Speaker, again, in 2015, we know how much went to Abetifi Presbyterian School, Atebubu College of Education and St Francis College of Education within the tertiary envelope. Then we went to polytechnics; all of them knew how much was going to them. Bolgatanga Polytechnic, GH¢2.5 million; and Ho Polytechnic, GH¢2.4 million.
In this particular instance, Parliament has been denied the opportunity to know. So, what we are doing is to say 32.33 per cent; then when we come to secondary education, GH¢242,019,149.10. We should know. Is this going to infrastructure or the Free Senior High School Policy of the Government? We deserve to know how much of the money would go into the purchase of textbooks and other related issues? Nothing is said about it.
Mr Speaker, I do not find this formula good enough. I support it reluctantly because we have run into half year, and probably, they only need to struggle from July up to December, 2017, when we would have the next Budget Statement.
Mr Speaker, since 2008, this formula does not meet the requirement of this House as a GETFund formula -- 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 up till today, this
has never been the way this Parliament works in terms of approving formulae. Therefore, what accounts for this? It cannot just be in terms of it.
Mr Speaker, my second point is that, I know that when we dealt with the formula -- the Hon Member for Savelugu is here. I visited the Veterinary College in his constituency, in between Walewale and Savelugu; one of the best tertiary institutions that does training at that level. They have never benefited from any Government financing by way of infrastructure or GETFund.
I know that Hon Ras Mubarak raised it very strongly, that a special dispensation be done for the Veterinary College at Pong- Tamale, if the people of Savelugu are to benefit from this particular facility.
Mr Speaker, therefore, next time, I hope that the Hon Majority Leader would encourage the Hon Minister, to give us fine details, so that we, the institutions and the Ghanaian public, could track that it was said that UDS would get GH¢10 million. They must know, that is their entitlement.
Mr Speaker, but if they just put it at GH¢255,500,000.00, we may never know the discretion and how this money would be disbursed, which could be problematic.
Mr Speaker, in conclusion, the Hon Minister for Finance -- I am happy the Hon Deputy Minister for Finance is here. When they came and laboured to introduce the new capping policy, we knew that they would run into difficulties.
Mr Speaker, this is because simple and basic economics show, that the reason the previous Government did not keep faith with statutory funds was the very
rigidities we talked about. The rigidities are captured in compensation, statutory funds and interest payments. So, given that for 2010 up to 2016, the Administration of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) never honoured this VAT obligation to the statutory funds, is primarily because the moneys were re- profiled in order to meet those obligations.
Mr Speaker, when they tell the Ghanaians that they are capping, as if they have made savings -- no, it would go into the same expenditure envelope of compensation, interest payments and debts. If it is not true, they should bring the additional resources. They are taking more than they require from this. Mr Speaker, we have difficulties with it.
Mr Speaker, my final comment is to the Ministry of Finance. Our understanding of their introduction of capping on Value Added Tax (VAT) for National Health Insurance, and specifically to GETFund, was that, henceforth, they would not accumulate arrears. Therefore, any accruals to those funds, based on the 2.5 per cent formula, would be released to the statutory funds. So, from January up to the first quarter, we expect them to be up to date with 2017 and on the second quarter. Then their problem would be arrears.
Mr Speaker, but if they want to accumulate arrears in 2017, even as they cap, they would destroy the sustainability of the Fund and undermine their own capping objectives.
Mr Speaker, if they have come to cap, we do not expect them to accumulate arrears again in respect of the statutory 2.5 per cent. If they cannot do it for 2017, they should assure us that in 2018, they would live anew, which would be that, anything of 2.5 per cent would go straight to the Controller and Accountant-General and the Fund.