General News of Friday, 6 February 2015
Source: Malik Muhaq Mudeen
Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, 2016 running mate to Nana Akufo-Addo, has said that the many hardships the people of Ghana are facing, is as a result of the fact that the government is broke, despite having accrued mindboggling resources since it assumed office in 2009.
Dr. Bawumia made these comments while speaking to students of the Tamale Polytechnic on Thursday at a forum organized by the Tertiary Education Students Confederacy (TESCON) branch on the campus.
Dr. Bawumia while speaking to the charged audience laid bare the records with regards to how much resources the NDC government since 2009 has accrued in contrast to the resources accrued to the NPP government between 2001 and 2009.
“In the area of taxation, the NDC government has collected a total of some GHC 62 billion in the last six years (2009-2014). In the eight years of the NPP government, the total tax revenue collected was GHC 15.2 billion.
The NDC government has borrowed the equivalent of some $27 billion (i.e. the US dollar value of the debt at the time of borrowing) between 2009 and 2014. During the eight-year government of the NPP (2001-2008) the government borrowed the equivalent of some $ 5billion (i.e. the US dollar value of the debt at the time of borrowing)”, he said.
Continuing, he noted “Ghana’s gold exports over the last six years under the NDC government amounted to $25 billion. In the eight years of the NPP government, total gold exports amounted to some $9 billion dollars.
Ghana’s cocoa exports over the last six years under the NDC government amounted to some $14.5 billion. In the eight years of the NPP government, total gold exports amounted to some $7.4 billion dollars. Indeed, cocoa and gold prices were some 50% higher in the period 2009-2014 than the 2001-2008 period. ”
The NPP Vice-Presidential candidate also noted that the NDC government had been blessed with oil revenue, something no government in Ghanaian history had.
“Ghana has also become an oil exporter during the period of the NDC government. Ghana has exported some $13.7 billion of oil in the last four years. There were no oil revenues accruing from oil exports during the 2001-2008 period of NPP governance.”
Dr. Bawumia questioned why despite all these unprecedented resources, the people of Ghana are facing unprecedented hardships and explained that the only reason why this is the case is the economic mismanagement and corruption that has characterised the government since it assumed office.
“The question therefore is if the NDC has had available all these resources in terms of taxation, loans, gold, cocoa and oil exports amongst others, then why is it that we are facing more wahala than in the period of NPP governance when the government had much less in terms of financial resources? Why are all the social safety nets collapsing? Why are businesses collapsing? Why are jobs not available? The answer ladies and gentlemen is “Economic Mismanagement” and “Corruption”.”, he said.
Dr. Bawumia proceeded to explain that all the hardships and the sorry state of the Ghanaian economy is basically because Ghana is broke.
“The mismanagement of the economy has resulted in a situation where basically Ghana is broke. Just think about this for a moment:
- Why is government unable to meet its payments on the school feeding program? Because the government is broke.
- Why is government unable to meet its payments on the DACF? Because the government is broke.
- Why is government unable to meet its payments on the GETFUND. Because the government is broke.
- Why is government unable to meet its payments on the NHIS? Because the government is broke.
- Why is government unable to meet its payments to contractors? Because the government is broke.
- Why is government unable to meet its payments of allowances to teacher trainees? Because the government is broke.
- Why is government unable to meet its payments to nursing trainees? Because the government is broke.
- Why is government unable to meet its pension obligations to workers? Because the government is broke.
- Why do we have dumsor (power blackouts)? Because the government is broke. It cannot afford to buy fuel for VRA or import power.
- Why is the government going for an IMF bailout? Because the government is broke.
The government is broke notwithstanding the large amount of resources it has had because of its mismanagement of the resources.”, he said.
Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia concluded by indicating that the government so far had failed to properly account for what they had done with all these unprecedented resources. He noted that what was more shocking was the fact that Ghana was spending a higher proportion of its income on infrastructure before it had oil than it is today.
“The increase in oil revenues notwithstanding, capital expenditure as a % of GDP has actually been on the decline from 7.1% of GDP in 2009 to 5.2% by 2015. It is in fact a travesty that Ghana before the discovery of oil was spending a higher proportion of its income on infrastructure investment than after the discovery of oil.
So next time you hear an NDC official try to convince you that they have done a lot of projects remind them that in fact they have not. Remind them that the people of Ghana have paid more for their mismanagement and corruption than what they claim to have spent on projects. They should have done much more given the resources they have had. The data shows quite clearly that infrastructure expenditure as a proportion of GDP has declined!”, he said.
Dr. Bawumia was accompanied by among others, National Youth Organizer of the NPP, Sammi Awuku and Regional Executives of the party in the Northern Region.