The customary presence of Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia and Bank of Ghana Governor Dr Ernest Addison was notably missing during the Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta's presentation of the country's fiscal management to Parliament.
Both key members of the Economic Management Team were not present as the Finance Minister delivered the budget statement for the upcoming year.
Over the past seven years, Vice President Bawumia had consistently occupied the front row of Parliament, actively engaging with Members of Parliament and responding to cheers from the Majority side during budget presentations.
The absence of these prominent figures did not go unnoticed, and Minority Leader Dr Cassiel Ato Forson raised the issue, bringing attention to the missing individuals during the budget presentation.
After the budget presentation, the Minority Caucus in Parliament, led by Dr Ato Forson, expressed their dissatisfaction, describing the 2024 budget as "empty." Dr Forson emphasised that the government would be leaving behind a "bankrupt economy" and warned of an impending "ahokyere" (hardship) state in the country.
In the budget, the government introduced various tax reliefs for sectors such as clothing, electronics, auto, and sanitary pads, particularly those involved in local production or assembly.
Finance Minister Ofori-Atta highlighted the government's expectation that the economy would reach the one trillion mark by 2024, considering it a milestone and a significant achievement by the Akufo-Addo government