Vice-President Mahamudu Bawumia has challenged former President John Dramani Mahama to always back his claims with data in order to avoid embarrassing himself.
Mr Mahama, since the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic, has been making statements on the economy, claiming that he supervised a better economy than what the Akufo-Addo-led NPP government is currently doing.
Dr Bawumia has, however, laughed off the claim and advised the former president to look at data on his own record in government, as well as data on the economic management and performance of the Akufo-Addo government before speaking on the economy.
“This time in the life of our country is not the time for politics. We are facing a global pandemic and the focus of the President, as we have all seen, has been leading and making sure the right things are done to protect the lives of Ghanaians. This has been the focus of the President and, generally, the focus of the government,” Dr Bawumia told journalists after a COVID-19 meeting at Jubilee House yesterday.
“That notwithstanding, we have seen that the former, President John Mahama, has been making a number of statements and many of these statements have been proven not to be true or when you look at the data, they are not true,” Dr Bawumia said.
NDC’s eight years
Dr Bawumia said the NDC’s eight years under Mr Mahama was nothing to write home about.
“They left us with declining agriculture, declining industry, interest rates were high, and inflations was high. In fact if you look at the data in terms of macro-economic performance, in any economy since the year 2000, the tenure of the former President was the worst in terms of outcomes in macro-economic performance,” he said.
The Vice-President continued: “That’s the data; it is not me saying it. The banking system was weak, unemployment was rising, our national health insurance was back to cash and carry. We had four years of dumsor with its devastating impact on our economy. And notwithstanding that, electricity prices were being increased by an average of 45 per cent between 2010 and 2015. Our public finances were in a precarious state. Of course, that resulted in us having to go to the IMF for a bailout and policy credibility. Prices were being increased and there was a freeze on public sector recruitment. Cuts in allowances for lecturers, abolishing of nurses and teacher trainees’ allowances and even for teachers who had worked for two, three years, they were being paid for just three months of allowance. Common chalk was even a problem in our schools.”
The Vice-President noted that rather than keeping quiet, it is the responsibility of the government and all Ghanaians not to remain silent when untruths are being peddled, especially by such a high-ranking former officer of state.
“This is really the history that the NDC would want us to forget and which we should not forget. Our memories should not be that short. We should remember what they did,” he said.
Dr Bawumia said since President Akufo-Addo took over the running of the country in 2017, his government has been able to transform the mess it inherited from former President Mahama’s government, stating that data on all economic indicators buttress his point.
“Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo took over the reins of government in 2017. After over three years in office, he has been able to manage the transformation of this country and we have been able to perform much, much better than the situation we inherited,” Dr Bawumia noted
“When it comes to the data, it has been very clear. Agricultural growth, we have performed better, interest rate, we did perform better, exchange rate depreciation, we have performed better. When it comes to the creation of jobs, over 350,000 jobs in the public sector and more in the private sector. When it comes to jobs, we have performed better. We have restored the teachers and nurses’ trainee allowances,” he stated.
He also mentioned the digital transformation brought about by the NPP government. “Today, if you go for passport and driver’s licence application, there is no ‘wahala’ involved. We have digitized and transformed the place so there is no ‘wahala’. Renewal of NHIS membership that used to be a problem where people queued up at district offices for days, today, you can do it online on your mobile phone. [There is]online business registration at Registrar General; we have also digitized the courts through an e-justice programmes,” he said.
Source: Daily Statesman