Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta says the Akufo-Addo-led New Patriotic Party has lived up to expectation, adding that it has delivered on the competence it promised Ghanaians before the 2016 elections.
“Mr. Speaker, as it is evident to all, not only have we turned the economy around through hard work and innovative policies, but we also have the courage to implement a GHC100 billion GhanaCARES (Obaatanpa) programme. The diligent and disciplined pursuit of the innovative policies have restored macroeconomic stability, promoted inclusive growth and transformed lives of millions of Ghanaians,” he said.
The Finance Minister said this yesterday in Parliament during the presentation of the first quarter of the 2021 budget statement, in which he is seeking approval to spend GH¢27.4 billion for the first quarter of 2021.
“Today, Mr Speaker, some 1.2 million Ghanaians are in Senior High School. Almost three million of our children are in the School Feeding Programme. We are exporting food through the Planting for Food and Jobs programme and 1D1F is generating jobs all around. How far, indeed, has the Lord brought us. This is the competence we promised Ghanaians,” he stated.
The Finance Minister accordingly called on the electorate to reject leaders who do not have the competence to manage the economy, which has been revitalized by the Akufo-Addo-led government.
According to him, the economy under the Akufo-Addo-led administration, even in a period of a global health crisis, is far better than four years ago when it was being managed by the erstwhile Mahama administration.
Making reference to the Bible, the Finance Minister said President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has rescued the Ghanaian economy out of Egypt into the Promised Land.
“Akufo-Addo government took Ghana out of the IMF Programme in record time. Ironically, those who mismanage the economy for us to come and fix it are the one’s wishing Ghana ill. My message to them is this: there is no turning back.
“The economy is stronger today than it was four years ago, and will continue to grow stronger and stronger with four more years to do more for the people of Ghana, with God’s help.
“Mr Speaker, we must be careful as a nation to reject those who return from the Promised Land with a bad report to subvert the spirit of our people and to reject leaders who would take us back to Egypt,” Mr Ofori-Atta said.
Stabilizing the economy
He pointed out that as part of efforts to stabilize the economy, the Akufo-Addo government has lowered the rate of debt accumulation, re-profiled the country’s debt and implemented a number of structural reforms in a transparent manner for an efficient and effective management of public debt.
“Mr Speaker, these significant macro-fiscal gains were achieved in spite of having paid GHC12 billion in excess energy capacity charges which we inherited in 2017, and have kept the lights on, settled substantial part of the GH¢11 billion, outstanding arrears bequeathed to us, abolished 17 unproductive taxes to boost productivity of the private sector,” he said.
The Finance minister, referencing the significant gains made by the NPP government over the past years, said is a “clear evidence of the sharp and stark difference between a competent Akufo-Addo-led government and others.”
Mr Ken Ofori-Atta is optimistic that the President’s leadership, coupled with the performance of the NPP government, will make Ghanaians return the government to power for four more years.
“Mr Speaker, we are confident that because of God’s guidance and support, the President’s leadership, and our performance, Ghanaians will return the NPP government to power for 4 more for Nana to do even more and also to continue with our economic revitalisation and transformation programme; to improve the quality of life for the Ghanaian people who, at the end of every decision, are the ones who matter and who should reap the dividends from the transparent and democratic governance that the NPP is offering,” he said.