Economy: 'Bawumia playing politics'

General News of Sunday, 6 December 2015


Dr Mahamudu Bawumia TraditionalAlhaji Dr Mahamudu Bawumia

Financial analyst, Toma Imihere, has played down promises by the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP), to turn the country’s economic fortunes around if voted into office, indicating that it cannot be done instantly.

“NPP is totally exaggerating their ability to fix the problem as if when they enter they will just fix the problem, they can’t. If Dr Bawumia is saying that [then] that is the politician in him.

“He knows that the problem is difficult to solve and that it will take a long time, but of course, he wants power, so, he is playing politics,” the Editor of the Financial Post newspaper said Saturday on Citi FM’s ‘The Big Issue.’

“Dr Bawumia sits there and talks as if he has all the solutions, but he hasn’t. Twenty-five per cent of entire budget goes into interest payments alone,” Mr Imihere noted.

He emphasised that: “There is no way you can turn that around in one year or two years or even three years. You can’t, and it is crowding out government expenditure.”

The former Editor of the Business Finder also said the government has performed badly in terms of managing the economy, especially in the area of public debt.

“He [Dr Bawumia] talks about the fact that agriculture gets only 1.1% of budgetary allocation. The standard for Africa is 6%. We were doing about 4%, 5%; it is true and it is all part of the problem. The government is crowding out on expenditure by the public debt.

“I do believe that this government has put us where we are. What we should be looking out [for] is not about who did this or that, we should be looking forward to solving it.

“The fact is that government has realised its mistakes, but there is no quick fix either from this government or the NPP,” he told host Richard Sky.

“Do you think Seth Terkper and Kwesi Amissah-Arthur don’t know the problems they have created? You think they are not aware? They know the problems they have created, they know how it has come about, but the problem is solving it,” he added.

Asked by the host of the programme whether the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC) can dig the country out of the current situation, he answered: “Over the medium to long term, yes; but the question is that can the NPP do it faster? Possibly they could, but neither the NPP nor the NDC can solve it overnight.”