Politics of Wednesday, 18 February 2015
The ongoing demonstration by the main opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) is “more about putting pressure on Government to win a political point than drawing Government’s attention to the [power crisis],” a political science lecturer at the University of Ghana Dr Alidu Seidu has told Morning Starr host Kafui Dey on Starr 103.5FM.
NPP Flagbearer Nana Akufo-Addo is leading the demonstration which the party says it meant to bring to the attention of President John Mahama and his Government, the suffering of the ordinary Ghanaian in the current power crisis.
Dr Seidu, however, is of the opinion that since the Government is already aware of the situation and need not be reminded of it, the NPP’s march betrays the party’s plan to ride on the crest of wave of the current situation to achieve political advantage.
“Government knows the current most important challenge it’s facing is energy and that even explains the reason why we heard of a reshuffle where the minister of power has now been made a Cabinet Minister and the Minister for Water Resources Works and Housing has been moved out of Cabinet,” Dr Seidu noted.
“What I think this demonstration seeks to do is to increase the pressure on Government to actually deal with the issue and increasing the pressure will also bring a political benefit to the people who are in charge of heightening the pressure on Government and that is the opposition NPP, so definitely they are going to score a political point,” he observed.
He, however, said the power crisis, which has spanned decades, is proof of the country’s “complete” failure to deal with the situation, and “we must all bow our heads down in shame.”
There is a supply deficit which has led to the shedding of between 440 and 650 Megawatts during off-peak and peak hours, instead of a planned 250 and 350 Megawatts.
Power Minister Dr Kwabena Donkor has said the Government is working on the situation and promised to resign by the end of 2015 if the situation persists after the deadline.