The Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia has taken a swipe at ex-President John Mahama, accusing him of being ill-informed about the true state of the Ghanaian economy.
Dr. Bawumia said the former President must apprise himself with the right data on the state of the country’s economy before making contrary statements that set him up for embarrassment.
Speaking at a media interaction after a COVID-19 response team meeting on Monday, the Vice President said John Mahama’s claims of the economy being in disarray due to the COVID-19 outbreak should be disregarded because it is untrue.
“My humble advice to former President John Mahama is [that he should] take a look at the data, this is not green book data. Take a look at the data before you speak, otherwise, you will end up embarrassing yourself. When it comes to the data, it has been very clear; in agricultural growth, we have performed better; industry growth, we have performed better; inflation, we have performed better, on interest rate, we did perform better; exchange rate depreciation, we have performed better. That is the data.
The Vice President indicated that despite the heavy toll the Coronavirus pandemic has taken on the country’s economy, the government’s policy programmes and plans are still in progress.
He said statutory payments were still being made while road contracts are still ongoing.
John Mahama in a Facebook interaction session last week, said the much-hyped economy by the governing New Patriotic Party has failed the test of time as it is currently in shambles a month after the Coronavirus outbreak.
According to him, the economy is currently in Intensive Care following the ravaging impact of COVID-19.
The former President in answering a question from a viewer about how he intends to revive the economy should he be elected as President in the 2020 general elections said the economy is struggling because it was built on propaganda.
“In reflecting on this question, this is one of the issues that we have continuously talked about that it is always necessary that when you are building an economy to have enough buffers and create fiscal space so that when you are faced with a shock or adversity, you are easily able to overcome it”.
“Unfortunately, this government has used a lot of propaganda saying the economy has been the best that we have ever had since independence. Unfortunately, just one month of coronavirus the economy is in ICU. If we didn’t run to the IMF for the one billion rapid credit facility, it is possible that in the next month probably salaries would not have been paid and so our economy is on ventilators, and it needs thinking to rescue it from the ICU,” Mahama said.
Mahama’s comment has already triggered a response from the Minister for Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah who stressed that the economy is resilient and can afford the many interventions and programmes the government is rolling out amidst the COVID-19 outbreak in Ghana.
Akufo-Addo’s first term infrastructure best in 4th Republic – VP Bawumia
The Vice President of the Republic, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, has challenged anyone who has data to prove that any first term government has provided more infrastructure than the Akufo-Addo administration to step up and provide the evidence.
Speaking on the sidelines of a Covid 19 meeting at the Jubilee House on Monday, 4th May, 2020, Vice President Bawumia indicated that some members of the opposition NDC, especially former President Mahama, have sought to downplay the infrastructure achievements of the Akufo-Addo administration in the vain hope that Ghanaians would not independently check.
“But I can say without any fear of contradiction, the data shows that in the history of the Fourth Republic there is no government that has provided as much infrastructure across all sectors in its first term than the first term Government of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo. If you want to challenge that please bring your data” he declared.
Recalling the precarious situation the Akufo-Addo government ‘inherited’ a little over three years ago, including four years of dumsor with its costs, negative industry growth, decline in agricultural growth, a freeze on public sector recruitment, abolition of teachers training allowances, abolition of nurses training allowances and the worst macroeconomic performance (2013-2016) since 2000, Vice President Bawumia emphasised that the Akufo-Addo administration had not only reversed this rot, but had made giant strides in all sectors of the economy.
“The government of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has been in office for a little over 3 years. Even though there is still a lot to do, any objective assessment of our performance will agree that we have performed much much better than the situation that we inherited at the beginning of 2017.
“All the major indicators – Agriculture, Industry, Inflation, Interest rates, job creation, education, provision of essential services, resourcing the security and anti-corruption agencies, justice delivery- and many more show we have performed better.
“We have done all of these, while providing infrastructure in schools all across the country to ensure the success of Free SHS, while building health infrastructure and constructing roads. Contractors are getting paid, every sector of the economy is witnessing major infrastructure development.
All of these works are going on even now despite the global challenge of the covid 19 pandemic.” Throwing a direct challenge to the former President, Dr Bawumia stated: “The true test of the robustness of an economy can be measured in a time of crisis: Dumsor (internal) and COVID (external).
What mitigating measures did the NDC under John Mahama provide for businesses and individuals? They rather increased electricity and fuel prices, cancelled teacher and nursing allowances, among others.
“We (Akufo-Addo government) have been able to do all this because we have built a strong economy and managing it in a way that allows us to continue to do these and more even amidst a global pandemic.
“The data is clear. My humble advice to the former President Mahama is to take a look at the data (not Green Book data) and try to understand it before you speak otherwise you will embarrass yourself.”
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