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Official data disproves Sammy Gyamfi’s claim about Ghana’s Exchange Rate in Nov. 2022

Claim: Communications Director of the National Democratic Congress, Sammy Gyamfi, claims the cedi was pegged at 17.00 to a dollar in November 2022.

Verdict: Although the Cedi significantly depreciated against the dollar in 2022, data from the Bank of Ghana proves the claim false.

Full Text

The opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) continues to doubt the ability of Dr Mahamadu Bawumia, vice president and flagbearer of the New Patriotic Party, to steer the country’s economic growth. 

The NDC insists that the Vice-President, who also heads the government’s Economic Management Team (EMT), has failed to live up to expectations,  thus raising fear about his ability to lead the country when Ghana heads to the polls in December to elect a new leader.

National Communications Director of the NDC, Sammy Gyamfi, speaking on TV3’s ‘The Key Points’ on Saturday, Feb 10, 2024, said that Cedi’s depreciation against the dollar was contrary to the promise made by the government.

Making his argument, he claimed that the Cedi was selling at 17.00 to a dollar in November 2022.

“Bawumia told us, ‘I have arrested the dollar and given the key to the IGP.’ The dollar broke jail a long time ago and has now moved from GHC 4.00 in 2016 to GHC 12.60, after it hit a record high of GHC 17.00 by November 2022,” he claimed on the show live-streamed on Facebook.

A short clip that captures Gyamfi’s statement has been posted on TV3’s X page. It can be found between minutes 2:25 and 3:15.

There is no dispute that since 2022, the Cedi has depreciated significantly against the US Dollar. The Bank of Ghana, in a Monetary Policy Committee Press Release on January 30, 2023 (Paragraph 22), reported that:

“For 2022, the Ghana cedi depreciated by 30.0 per cent against the US dollar, after reversals of some of the losses in December.”

Notwithstanding this, did the depreciation reach its peak at GHC 17.00?

Verification

We visited the Bank of Ghana website for the historical interbank foreign exchange. We filtered the data for the rates between Nov 1 and Nov 30, 2022.  

We observed that between Nov. 16 and Nov. 30, the Cedi sold to a dollar at 13.1. This was the highest selling rate throughout the month and until the end of that year.

Source: Bank of Ghana

Also, for our analysis, we checked with Wise, a UK-based foreign exchange financial company. Their website provided a chart showing how the cedi had stood against the dollar over five years, beginning from Feb 10, 2019. 

As the chart shows, at no point did the Cedi sell at 17.00 to the dollar.

Source: Wise.com

Conclusion

Data from the Bank of Ghana shows that Sammy Gyamfi’s claim that the Cedi sold at 17.00 to the dollar in November 2022 is false.

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