General News of Thursday, 23 February 2017
Ghana’s Young Entrepreneurs(GYE) has in a press release commended and expressed both their hope and reservations about some policies mentioned in the President’s State of the Nation Address.
They commended his commitment to growing the private sector, and hoped it would be followed through as previous governments had touted these commitments but failed to follow through.
With regards to agriculture GYE acknowledged that it would aid in private sector government, but felt that the campaign “Planting for Food and Jobs” would be better handled by groups and organizations that are like GYE as they have the requisite information instead of the plan to have District Assemblies handle it.
On policies such as Free SHS, Teacher and Nursing Training allowance, the group expressed their reservations about them being achieved in the course of the year.
Below is the full press release:
Ghana’s Young Entrepreneurs (GYE) wish to commend the President, His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo for his strong commitment and desire to see to the growth of the private sector.
In his maiden State of the Nation Address (SoNA) to the people of Ghana, the President emphasised on the promotion of private sector partnership. This initiative, to GYE is one of the surest ways of helping the local industries to develop and give impetus to the government’s “One-district-one-factory” policy.
It is a fact that past governments over the years have made such commitments towards helping our local industries grow but failed, so it is our hope and desire history does not repeat itself.
Agriculture is one of the vehicles fuelling the growth of the private sector development.
The “Planting for Food and Jobs” campaign with its accompanying 125 million Canadian dollar that is supposed to be managed by the District Assemblies would have to be re-evaluated for its viability.
GYE believes that leaving this laudable yet involving project in the hands of District Assemblies to manage will weaken the main drive of the project. For this project to be successful, groups and organizations such as the GYE and other like-minded groups, who have the data of youth in active agribusiness should be involved to identify and register all progressive farmers for this project.
We are fully in support of the government’s decision to create jobs and boost confidence in the private sector to invest in the economy. We must therefore allow Agriculture to play a pivotal role in that agenda. Currently, farmers are left on their own, food prices are high and we import almost everything we eat, including vegetables from our Sahelian neighbours.
The President is right when he indicated that agriculture provides the best opportunity to use modern methods to change the lives of many, within the shortest possible time.
However, government must not be in a hurry to implement these policies in the Agriculture sector since most of the target beneficiaries are the youth who are now technologically inclined, and will in the absence of reliable internet facilities, social amenities, good and portable water, reliable electricity in the catchment areas, not be interested after all.
In any case, if government is insistent on implementing these policies, then we believe it must adopt Block farming and government itself must be the market. To this end, government must revitalize the Ghana National Trading Company (GNTC) by giving them resources to be able to buy the produce from farmers and store them.
Even though, we concur perfectly with the President on most of his policy programs, talk of Free SHS, NHIS, Teacher and Nursing Allowances etc, we still have some reservations to some of the policies, and habour the fear of achieving most of these in one year as he promised.
Ghana’s Young Entrepreneurs is of the view that, placing VRA and Gridco on the stock market as means of solving our energy crisis would do good if properly monitored.
The energy Sector is already indebted to the tune of 2.4 billion dollars.
How are we to finance this debt?
Are we going to borrow to pay the debt?
Are we going to use the scarce resource for other recurrent expenditures and capital expenditures to service the debt?
It must be put on record that if we list any of these companies on the Stock exchange it will give government recapitalization to strengthen its operations and service the debt.
Government must be the major shareholder and the interest of Ghana should be promoted.
Long Live Ghana
Long Live Ghana’s Young Entrepreneurs
Anthony SK Morrison Director of Communications Ghana’s Young Entrepreneurs 0508320024 0543830480 0269266668 www.gyegh.com