General News of Thursday, 18 October 2018
A presidential aspirant, Alhaji Nurideen Iddrisu has alleged that many local businesses are collapsing under the Akufo-Addo led New Patriotic Party (NPP) government due to vindictiveness.
Alhaji Iddrisu, who wants to be president on the ticket of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) says that the government has targeted businesses believed to be owned by members of the opposition parties, particularly the NDC.
“We saw banks collapse under NPP because there is vindictiveness. There is hatred for the opposition”, he said, adding that “Once you are not part of them, they attack you and destroy your business.”
In an exclusive interview with Graphic Online in Accra, Alhaji Iddrisu said “we can’t progress as a nation” if systems are instituted to destroy local businesses owned by Ghanaians and that “somebody must change that”.
“We can’t be destructive. We don’t believe in ourselves,” he said, stressing that “they are attacking everybody.”
According to him, if elected as President, he will change the system by empowering local businesses and pointed out that his administration will not discriminate against any business no matter the background of the persons who own it and the person’s political affiliation.
“I am coming to ensure that the indigenous Ghanaian businesses and banks are empowered to create jobs,” he stated, adding that vindictiveness and wickedness against Ghanaian businesses would not contribute to the development of the country and its prosperity.
Among his priorities Alhaji Nurideen said would be empowering local contractors by paying them on time.
He said the construction sector contributes hugely to the economy and that because many local contractors are not paid on time, they can’t compete with the foreign firms.
According to him, paying local contractors on time meant contributing to the reduction of unemployment and the stabilization of the country’s falling currency.
Pharmaceuticals / agriculture
At age 43, Alhaji Nurideen, is a banker and an oil and gas consultant and he argued that one of the areas where he would focus attention more would be the pharmaceutical industry.
He explained that the country spends a lot of money importing drugs and that if local pharmaceutical companies are empowered to produce such drugs here in the country, it would stabilize the country’s economy.
He said the indigenous pharmaceutical companies could be empowered with tax reliefs, particularly on the equipment they import for their operations in the first year.
Touching on agriculture, Alhaji Nurideen, said he would support agriculture by waving off import duties on farm implements and machinery.
He believes that if farmers have access to farm machinery and other productive elements at a cheaper cost, it would help them to venture into large-scale farming which in turn would inure to the benefit of the country, particularly when it comes to job creation.
He has, therefore, called on NDC members to vote massively for him to enable him to lead the party and win power in 2020.
He argued he was the best candidate for the party going into Election 2020.
Alhaji Nurideen will be contesting against former President John Dramani Mahama; Mr Ekwow Spio-Garbrah, a former Minister of Trade and Industries; Mr Sylvester Mensah; a former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), Professor Joshua Alabi; a former Vice Chancellor of the University of Professional Studies, Accra (UPSA) and Mr Alban Bagbin, the Second Deputy Speaker of Parliament,
Others are Mr George Kweku Ricketts-Hagan, the Member of Parliament for Cape Coast South; Mr Stephen Atubiga, a member of NDC’s communications team; Mr Elikplim Agbemava, a legal practitioner; Mr David Dotse Kwame Kuwadah, Kojo Bonsu, a former Mayor of Kumasi and Mr Goosie Tanoh, a former Special Assistant to former President Rawlings.