Stakeholders at the 2022 Policy and Governance Forum have called for policy coherence for the operational efficiency and profitability of specified entities in the country.
They said State institutions needed to have coherent policies because conflicting policies and actions across Government Agencies, Departments and Specified Entities had blurred the achievement of common goals.
Conflicting policies, they observed, had resulted in “needless turf wars, duplication of efforts, delays and high cost of doing business in Ghana.”
The stakeholders, including Chairpersons and Members of various Governing Boards of Specified Entities – State-Owned Enterprises (SOEs), Joint Venture Companies (JVC) and Other State Entities (OSEs), shared the sentiments at a plenary to discuss, among other issues, the operational efficiency of Specified Entities, expanding the national accounts to include SOEs and JVCs and corporate governance.
The 2022 Policy and Governance Forum, organised by the State Interest Governance Authority (SIGA) and other partners, was on the theme: “Improving the Performance of Specified Entities: Leadership and Technology.”
Currently, there are 183 Specified Entities in Government’s records consisting of 51 SOEs, 43 JVCs and 89 OSEs.
SIGA was established on June 7, 2019, under the SIGA Act 2019 (Act 990) with the mandate to oversee and administer the performance of SOEs, JVCs, and OSEs.
The stakeholders, taking turns to address the forum, called for the streamlining of existing policies or the introduction of new clear ones that would help address legacy issues as an important first step to sharpen the operational efficiency and effectiveness of Specified Entities and to help secure investments.
Professor George Gyan-Baffour, Chairperson of National Development Planning Commission (NDPC), said adapting to the realities of development dynamics by investing in planning and synergy of goals across Specified Entities was key to achieving operational goals.
He said Ghana’s Development Agenda required that the National Development Goals were integrated, coordinated and balanced the socio-economic dimensions of national development.
To achieve that balance, he said, Specified Entities must address inter-organisational and intra-organisational objective disharmony to enhance policy coherence in improving the national development outlook as a baseline for implementation of national goals.
He said investing in the consolidation of Specified Entities’ goals with synergistic actions in the broadest sense were crucial enablers of sustainable national development.
The NDPC Chairperson stated that Specified Entities that were better aligned with national goals had more opportunities in the realisation of their specific goals.
Mr MacEffort Adadey, Head of National Accounts, Controller and Accountant-General’s Department, speaking on expanding the national account to include SOEs and JVCs, said a significant number of Specified Entities had failed to report on their performance.
He said expanding the scope of the new accounting regime to include Specific Entities to ensure efficiency was important in improving comprehensive national financial performance reporting, stressing that ìwhen you hide the information, Ghana suffers.’
That, she noted, was the “missing piece in the financing innovation puzzle” in Ghana, which the Ghana Stock Exchange was collaborating with SIGA and SOEs to resolve, adding that entities could raise Patient Long-Term capital by becoming issuers of equity or debt securities.
Ms Florence Hope-Wudu, Managing Consultant, Purple Almond Consulting Services, during a panel discussion said to ensure effectiveness and profitability of SOEs, deploying a Corporate Governance Curriculum for the training of Boards of Specified Entities was significant.
She noted that the codes of best practice in Corporate Governance required Board Members to undergo periodic training to improve their knowledge and skills to become better leaders and change agents of public companies.
Mr Edward Boateng, Director General, SIGA, said, leadership and technology in the countryís current dispensation were inseparable in improving the performance of Specified Entities.
He, therefore, appealed to the Boards of Specified Entities to leverage technology and ethical standards to achieve individual and collective goals.