The Vice-Presidential Candidate of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, has called on Ghanaians in both the diaspora and at home to support and work for change as a matter of patriotic duty rather than partisan considerations.
Dr Bawumia urged all Ghanaians who wanted to genuinely see Ghana doing better than currently doing, and a Ghana that would meet the aspirations of its people and particularly its youth, to support Nana Akufo-Addo and the NPP.
In his view “the current NDC administration has proved beyond every doubt that it cannot build the Ghana we all dream of, despite the enormous resources and opportunities it has had in the last eight years.”
Town Hall event
Dr Bawumia made these comments at a Ghanaian town hall event organised in Houston, Texas, by the NPP USA Branch.
He outlined the current distress the country’s economy was facing and said it was imperative for Ghanaians to seek change in the upcoming November 7 election.
“For us, this will be a landmark election and in our point of view, the future is really at stake. In the last few years we have seen a major decline in economic growth, when we found oil and due to the oil discovery, GDP growth hit 15 per cent. Today growth has slumped to 3.5 per cent. Behind these numbers is an even more worrying development because in a country such as Ghana, you expect to see agriculture doing well at the very least.
“However, agriculture is almost collapsing. Agric, which should be the backbone of the economy, is growing at 0.04 per cent as of 2015. Manufacturing growth has also been in the negative for the last three years – negative 0.5 per cent in 2013, negative 0.8per cent in 2014 and negative 2 per cent in 2015. So agric is collapsing and manufacturing is in the negative and yet our President wants to tell us that our economy is resilient,” he argued.
According to Dr Bawumia, he does not understand what ‘resilient’ means in this context when he looks at all the indicators.
“How can unemployment be increasing, growth be declining, interest rates be high and rising, your debt levels be unsustainable, your health services are deteriorating, you cannot pay teacher trainee allowances, you cannot pay nursing trainee allowances, you cannot pay contractors, businesses are collapsing, utility prices are sky-rocketing and yet you are claiming that the economy is resilient? This President is clearly out of touch,”he said.
Dr Bawumia also mentioned the steep decline of the cedi, which he claimed was now hovering around four cedis to a dollar, after depreciating from GH¢1.20 to a dollar in 2009, the four-year dumsor scourge and the government’s unbridled borrowing and resort to high taxes, which had killed many businesses and made production in Ghana unattractive.
The NPP vice-presidential candidate noted that to transform the economy, an NPP government under Nana Akufo-Addo would focus on policies that would make Ghana a production hub and the most business and people-friendly economy in Africa in order to ensure that enough employment is generated for the youth of the country and businesses are able to grow and expand with an increase in revenues through the payment of corporate and income taxes, for infrastructural and social spending.