Speaking at an NPP branch meeting in Paris on Saturday, Nana Akufo-Addo explained that while some neighbouring countries had made giant strides in the last five years, Ghana, however, within the same time frame and under the leadership of President Mahama, was going backwards.
These were contained in a press statement from the party.
Nana Akufo-Addo pointed out in the statement that “Cote d’Ivoire, five or six years ago, was coming from civil war. The election in 2010 led to 100,000 displaced people, 3,000 people were killed as a result of the election between Laurent Gbagbo and Alassane Ouattara. In five years, because of good, strong leadership, Cote d’Ivoire is today the number one investment destination in Africa. They are growing at nine per cent a year and we are growing at 3.9 per cent. Last year, Cote d’Ivoire earned over $12 billion in exports of its agricultural products. In the same time, we earned $2 billion,” he said.
“We have to change these statistics. John Dramani Mahama cannot help us,” he stressed.
The NPP flag bearer outlined four “simple” reasons why Ghana could not continue under President Mahama and “why this man cannot help us”.
According to Nana Akufo-Addo, first, “In the 2012 manifesto of the NDC, they promised that over the next four years, that is between 2012 and 2016, they were going to grow the economy at an average of eight per cent. Last year we did 3.9 per cent.”
Again, quoting from the 2012 NDC manifesto, which states that “the NDC’s commitment is to increase the contribution of the manufacturing and industrialisation sectors to our economic development”, the NPP flag bearer indicated that “last year, the manufacturing sector grew at -1.9 per cent”, while “mining grew at -3.18 per cent.”
On education, Akufo-Addo again referred to the 2012 NDC manifesto which promised the construction of “two hundred (200) new community day senior high schools across the country” by the end of 2016. Till date, he noted, President Mahama had inaugurated only five, with a few months to the end of 2016.
“The fourth reason; When Kufuor was leaving office in 2008, the food import bill for our country was $600 million. Mills and Mahama criticised Kufuor for his performance and they promised to reduce it. Last year, the food import bill of our country was $1.5 billion. We are now importing plantain into Ghana! Agriculture, which in Kufuor’s last year was growing at 7.4 per cent, this last year was 0.04 per cent. These are the facts about Ghana; they are not my inventions. You look at the official and budget statistics, you’ll find them there,” he said.
He continued, “The mismanagement (of the economy) is the reason why, today, we are back with the IMF. We are going to change the fortunes of our country, and put it back on the road of prosperity and to progress.”
Nana Akufo-Addo gave an assurance that the NPP’s main focus, under his leadership, would be the revival of Ghana’s industrial, manufacturing and agricultural sectors, which would be key towards generating the hundreds of thousands of jobs required by the teeming masses of unemployed Ghanaian youth, as well as return Ghana onto the path of progress and prosperity.
“Apart from the plan and the programme, we have the human resources, both at home and abroad, among you, that can give our country a first-class government to be able to lead our country forward. It is not right that in the 21st century our people are still defecating in public. It is not right. We are going to change these facts about Ghana,” he added.