Vice-President Mahamudu Bawumia has cautioned State-Owned Enterprises (SOEs) against defaulting in the presentation of their audited financial reports.
He said government would strictly monitor such enterprises who fail to give timely accounts, and sanction them accordingly to serve as deterrence to other state-owned entities.
Speaking during the maiden edition of the Public Enterprises League Table (PELT) Awards, Dr Bawumia said the measure is to help government generate beneficial economic and social outcomes.
“I would like to also state that relative to timely financial reporting, the honeymoon is long over, and severe sanctions will follow from now onwards for those who fail to meet required deadlines as specified in the law. The state must generate beneficial economic and social outcomes from its investments in these entities, and the efforts made to improve reporting. The use of digital technology should make reporting much easier and seamless going forward,” he stated.
Acknowledging the significant role SOEs play in the economy, the Vice-President expressed support for the new award scheme introduced by the Public Enterprise Ministry.
In his view, the PELT Awards would help in projecting SOEs that are performing, and contributing to the improvement of the country’s socio-economic circumstances.
“I wholeheartedly support the innovation of the Public Enterprises League Table (PELT) because it provides a pathway for recognising well-performing boards, CEOs and their management. It is my wish that the Public Enterprises League Table will be the gold standard for recognizing specified entities whose responsiveness and performance would be open for all to see,” he said.
For his part, the Minister of Public Enterprises, Joseph Cudjoe, indicated that the newly introduced award scheme was to generate healthy competition among SOEs in the country.
According to him, the aim is to change the 65-year-old challenge of high indebtedness, loss making, non-performance and collapse of state entities.
The PELT Awards, Mr Cudjoe said, would build resilient entities that can contribute to the growth of the country, saying “the awards aspect of the PELT, as we are going to witness here, is to provide non-pecuniary incentives for improved performance and to recognize the CEOs/MDs/DGs and Boards of the good performing entities”.
“Unlike a typical soccer league table, when an entity is last on this league table, it does not mean it is going on relegation, but needs more attention including training and capacity building and possibly further capitalization by the shareholder.
“On the other hand, when an entity is first, it means, to a large extent, it is doing the right thing, and must be encouraged to do more. This is why the PELT must be understood as a management by exception tool. Ladies and gentlemen, I love competition because competition is fair and brings out the best in us.
“Yes, the person who comes first comes under pressure to sustain performance, and the person who comes last equally comes under pressure to improve performance. This how fair the PELT is, so enjoy the competition,” he noted.
He further explained that the scheme would serve as a tool to engender competition, and rank the performance of entities in respect of their attainment of targets set and agreed in the annual performance contract they signed with the State Interests and Governance Authority (SIGA).
“It is designed to be a technical ranking system on several dimensions ranging from financials, efficiency and productivity, management improvement and innovation,” he pointed out.
Meanwhile, at the end of the presentation, the Tema Development Company Limited (TDC) was crowned the overall Specified Entity of the Year.
Other awards include Most Compliant SOE, Ghana Irrigation Development Authority (GIDA); Most Innovative Regulator, Gaming Commission of Ghana; Most Innovative SOE, Volta River Authority; Regulator of The Year, DVLA; and State-Owned Enterprise of The Year, Tema Development Company Limited (TDC).
The event, which was organised by the Ministry of Public Enterprises, in collaboration with SIGA and the Ministry of Finance, aimed at rewarding hardworking entities in the country as well as motivating others.