Former President Kufuor Details How Otumfuo Single-Handedly Rescued Ghana From HIPC

Former President John Agyekum Kufuor has opened up about how the Ashantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, single-handedly saved Ghana from any economic catastrophe, during his tenure as president.

Speaking in a recent interview with Opemsuo Radio, former President Kufuor said that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) decided to throw out a request by his government for a bailout programme because of rumours of some corrupt activities at the Ministry of Finance.

He said that at that time Ghana had been classified as a Highly Indebted Poor Country (HIPC), which made it difficult for his government to get the needed funds to run the country and was in dire need of the IMF bailout.

Former President Kufuor said that when Otumfuo heard that the IMF had thrown out Ghana’s request, he took action, and within days the fund accepted Ghana’s request.

“We entered into HIPC as a country, and it was a dire situation. Ghana was struggling to receive foreign aid, so we engaged in negotiations with the IMF for two years, hoping to resolve our economic woes. However, at the last minute, the IMF meeting omitted Ghana from the agenda due to reports of irregularities at the Ministry of Finance.

“At that critical juncture, Otumfuo was scheduled to travel to America, where he had connections with influential figures. Just before his departure, he visited me at the castle, and I bid him farewell. The news of the rejection arrived just as he left. However, 3 to 4 days later, Juabenhene visited me, and I was surprised to see him because I thought he had travelled with Otumfuo. I briefed him on the failed IMF deal and urged him to inform the King when he leaves the country,” he is quoted to have said by

He added, “Juabenhene wasted no time in conveying the message to Otumfuo, who immediately contacted me.”.

The former president said that the Asantehene managed to arrange for him (Kufuor) to meet leaders of the World Bank and the IMF which not only led to Ghana getting the needed support from the fund but also helped the country get out of HIPC.

“Through his connections, Otumfuo arranged for me to speak directly with a World Bank official and later with an IMF official, who promised to advocate for Ghana’s case. This collaborative effort ultimately saved Ghana from the brink of an economic crisis and from HIPC.

“At that time, Ghana owed around $8 billion, but that approval saved Ghana over $4 billion,” he said.



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