The Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, has jumped to the defence of his boss, President Akufo-Addo, saying he is fixing the economy.
The President came under severe public criticisms over the weekend by users of the social media who held the view that the country had taken a nose dive. What started as an internet trend transitioned into a planned street protest, but the Police Service said it would not allow it.
Breaking his silence on the issue, Dr Bawumia posted on his Facebook page an assurance that the Akufo-Addo government was focused on tackling problems, which have come about as a result of the global pandemic.
He acknowledged the concerns a section of Ghanaians had raised, and also assured them of the government’s commitment to solving them. Dr. Bawumia, however, argued that the challenges the country was facing were not an isolated case, as the effects of the pandemic has hit world economies.
“We are four months into our four-year mandate. The job of government is to fix problems. This is what we have been doing since 2017. The COVID-19 pandemic has slowed down the global economy and caused increases in prices of commodities such as oil, cement and iron rods, as well as overall cost of shipping,” he explained.
Dr. Bawumia, however, said the Akufo-Addo government had a track record of fixing problems in the past four years, after inheriting an economy with no bone on the meat.”
“Nevertheless, it is very important to place the performance of our government over the last four years after inheriting an economy with no meat on the bone on record. The facts and data speak for themselves.”
Dr. Bawumia then went on to list achievements the Akufo-Addo government had chalked to demonstrate its ability to overcome the present challenges. He mentioned some of them as social intervention programmes to reduce the suffering of the citizens, positive economic indicators, job creation, increased agriculture output, critical infrastructure development, digitisation of the economy to make things easy for people, among others.
According to him, inflation was at 15.4%, but reduced to 10.3%, average bank lending rate at 32% reduced to 21%. He also cited that there were “limited availability of scholarships but the figure has now increased by 70%.
“Poor health infrastructure; Being addressed and will be enhanced by the Agenda 111 project of building district, regional and psychiatric hospitals, more Zipline drone centres, infectious disease centres.” He also noted that when Akufo-Addo assumed office, there was a freeze on public sector recruitment but today they have managed to recruit nurses, doctors, and other healthcare workers, teachers, police officers, and many others – all amounting to 750,000 workers.
“Weak food security. Ghana placed 78th on Global food security index; Ghana’s position on the global food security index has improved to 58th. . Low and declining agriculture output: Planting for Food and Jobs has increased food production. It has led to a 71% increase in the national production of maize and 34% in paddy rice. No industrial policy to encourage the setting up of factories- but Akufo-Addo implemented the One District, One Factory Initiative. In four years, 76 companies are in operation under 1D1F,” the Veep said in his post.