Mahama Is ‘Old Cargo’ – Bawumia Fires

Vice-President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia

Vice-President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia yesterday described the National Democratic Congress (NDC) flagbearer, John Mahama, as an ‘old quantity’ who for eight years as Vice-President and President could not do anything meaningful to empower the youth of the country.

“What the youth of this country should ask him (Mahama) is: What did John Mahama do for the youth in eight years of government? Did his government create jobs?” he said.

Speaking during this year’s chapter of the International Youth Day organized by the National Youth Wing of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) at Alisa Hotel in Accra, the Vice-President asked further, “Did his government maintain teacher training allowances? Did his government maintain nursing training allowances? Did his government maintain the Arabic teachers’ allowance?”

Deeds & Actions

Dr. Bawumia said that “promises are one thing but deeds and actions are another”, insisting that “actions speak louder than words and John Mahama’s record of incompetence has already spoken very loudly.”

“President Akufo-Addo has demonstrated an understanding of the issues facing the youth and has done something about the situation. His second term will by the grace of God be transformational for this country, with the youth at the centre of that transformation,” he added.

Ghana Card

The Vice-President taunted the NDC with the successful implementation of a National Identification (NIA) programme, something which he said the opposition NDC led by Mr. Mahama was unable to accomplish during their tenure, adding “the introduction of National ID cards is a game changer. NDC could not do it in eight years!”

Within three and half years of the NPP being at the helm, he said “about 13.5 million people have been registered and by the end of the year it is estimated that a total of some 16 million would have been registered.”

Main Anchor

The Ghana Card, he said, was set on becoming the anchor for formalizing the economy as well as integrating existing databases.

“All National ID numbers will be converted into TIN numbers,” he said as he explained that less than three million people were registered to pay taxes “but by next year, we would have at least 16 million registered tax payers. This is the power of digitization.”

On further advantages of digitization, the Vice-President said NHIS numbers would be converted as well as SSNIT and DVLA, among others.

Births, Deaths

The births and deaths registry, he said, was being digitized, adding that it was 80 per cent complete. This, he explained, would be linked to the NIA database next year so that newly born babies would be given National Identification numbers right from birth.

MoMo Interoperability

According to Dr. Bawumia, mobile money payments interoperability has been made possible, allowing the transfer of funds from mobile money accounts to bank accounts (back-to-back) and from mobile or bank accounts to biometric payment card accounts (e-zwich).

The triangular mobile money payments interoperability, he went on, “allows for the seamless movement of cash across bank accounts, mobile wallets and e-zwich cards.”

He said “every eligible Ghanaian will be able to get a bank account during our term. They were thinking about traditional bank accounts. Well, I can say without any fear of contradiction that as a result of mobile money interoperability over 15 million Ghanaians today (many of whom are unbanked in the traditional sense) have bank accounts.”

“By the end of the year through the power of digitization, 16 million Ghana cards (same number for voters’ ID cards), 15 million bank accounts and 16 million TIN would have been issued,” he said.

“Nana Akufo-Addo is changing this country for sure,” Dr. Bawumia added.

Online vehicle registration as well as online application for passport applications had reduced corruption, he pointed out.

He said the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) had launched a nationwide mobile application that would allow customers to buy power for their meters through their mobile phone at any time, adding “you will also be able to buy units for someone else using your phone by the end of this year.”

Present at the activity was the National Chairman of the NPP, Freddie W. Blay, and NPP officers including the National Youth Organizer, Henry Nana Boakye, aka Nana B, and regional youth organizers and deputies. Also present were members of TESCON.

Dr. Bawumia expressed gratitude to the youth of the party for their support, saying “today is International Youth Day and so on behalf of my beautiful wife, Samira, and I, we wish the youth of Ghana a happy day and God’s blessings.”

NPP Future

The future of the NPP and Ghana rests on the youth, he said, adding “one day at my retirement I will sit with my kids and grandchildren and say with pride that I once had interaction with you who will be presidents, ministers, parliamentarians, judges, great farmers, accomplished educationists and so on.”

He recalled what he said was the “rising and excelling capabilities of the young people in the NPP when they are given the opportunity to unearth their talents.”

“If you look through the appointments of President Akufo-Addo, it is obvious how commitment and loyalty to the party and Ghana has paid for many of our young men and women who were once like you,” he said.

By A.R. Gomda & Charles Takyi-Boadu

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