The governing New Patriotic Party has described as “another phantom”, former President John Mahama’s promise that he will inject 10 billion dollars into infrastructure projects and use that to create jobs in his second coming.
“He said this in a knee-jerk reaction to Akufo-Addo’s GHS100 billion CARES programme to help Ghana’s economy overcome COVID-19”, the National Organiser of the NPP, Mr Sammi Awuu said at a press conference on Thursday, 13 August 2020, adding: “We employ you the journalists to probe for details. It appears Mahama is very fond of the sum ten billion dollars. It is a total pipe dream for three reasons”.
The flag bearer of the National Democratic Congress, announced the $10-billion accelerated infrastructural plan last week.
“We are looking at what I call the BIG PUSH – injecting some $10 billion to dualise our roads, complete the remainder of the 200 Community Day Senior High Schools, finish all the hospital projects that have been left abandoned, and construct bridges to open up the country”, said Mr Mahama.
Speaking in an interview with Woezor TV, the NDC flag bearer said the major plank of his second coming as President “is to deliver jobs to our young people.”
The $10 billion BIG PUSH will inject money into infrastructural development, and according to the former President, “it will involve the construction industry, engineering and other professionals, and will bring a lot of artisans and everybody back into work.”H
However, Mr Awuku questions Mr Mahama’s commitment to such a promise.
“First, in 2013, working with his very good friend, Roland Agambire, amidst great fanfare, accompanied by an international superstar, Candidate Mahama went to cut the sod for the $10 billion Hope City.
“He promised thousands of jobs in the process of constructing multiple skyscrapers comprising business, shopping and residential facilities. Not knowing, they had not even acquired the land for the project! Nothing happened after the sod-cutting”, he recalled.
“Secondly, when Candidate Mahama says he is going to build projects, the Ghanaian people should be extremely worried because of the inflated cost of his projects. He is not interested in the outcome and the impact of the project on the lives of the people. He is not interested in value for money.
“So, when Candidate Mahama says he’s going to invest $10 billion in infrastructure, Ghanaians must treat it not as a promise, but a threat. It must not draw you towards him, rather you must run away from him”, he noted.
Thirdly, he said, “Candidate Mahama says that this 10-billion-dollar pipe-dream will create one million jobs. Mahama does not care about creating jobs for young people. In November 2016, Candidate Mahama told unemployed graduates that he is not a magician to put money inside people’s pockets. His former private sector development minister Rashid Pelpuo, said that young people should go into the forest and collect stones and come and sell by the roadside. They should also cut grass and come and sell. This was Candidate Mahama’s job creation strategy.
“Ladies and gentlemen, the problem with Candidate Mahama is that every Ghanaian knows him, because he was Vice-President and then President for a total of eight good years. Whatever he could have offered, whatever he could implement, whatever he had to give, whatever he could’ve done – he had eight years to do so. But he failed. That is why he suffered the heaviest defeat in any election in Ghana’s history. In fact, he gave Ghana the worst economic growth record since 1990. The facts are all there.
“It is, therefore, not surprising that former President Jerry Rawlings, the Founder of the NDC himself, the man who gave John Mahama his only ministerial opportunities, says he did not vote for his own candidate Mahama in 2016. Not only that, he will not say today if he will vote for Candidate Mahama in 2020! We all heard him on Asaase Radio last month. In fact, former President Rawlings believes that Candidate Mahama’s main target is 2024.
“Candidate Mahama himself let the cat out of the bag when in Savannah last week, he referred to 8 years of President Akufo-Addo, as if 2020 is just a trial run for 2024 for him. The NDC must wake up to Candidate Mahama’s plans. He does not mean well for the NDC. If he were for the interest of the NDC he would have rather used his money and resources to support a potentially winnable candidate for the future. But he chose to run with his abysmal record.
“If our friends in the NDC were not convinced a few weeks ago that Candidate Mahama’s real plan, as revealed by the NDC founder, is to close the space for contest for him to prepare for 2024 then they should be in no doubt now. JJ Rawlings saw the script early. Candidate Mahama is not interested in a succession plan for the NDC and this is something the rank and file of the NDC must wake up to. Candidate Mahama is all about John Mahama. He is not in this race for the NDC and certainly not for Ghana.
“Ghana needs a selfless, bold, decisive, caring and visionary leader to carry us forward at a time like this. That leader is Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, a man of vision, a man of courage; a compassionate, caring, thoughtful and matured man.
“NPP is ready for December 7, 2020. For Ghanaian voters who came out in their numbers to register, the real show of your civic duty is to show up in your numbers on Monday, December 7 to vote and vote for four more to do more for you!
“Come out, observe all the COVID-19 protocols and vote for your welfare and wellbeing; vote for your children; vote for your community; vote for your country, Ghana. Vote for NPP for Akufo-Addo to protect and build on our gains as a nation”.