Ghana is at Peace – President Nana Addo

by KOFI AYIM

The President of the Republic of Ghana Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo says Ghana is very much at peace. The President made this observation to a cross section of the Ghanaian community at a dinner in Rochelle, New York, on September 23. He conceded that Ghana is currently experiencing economic challenges but “is not in crisis.” He explained that hardship has been visited on the Ghanaian populace because of the unexpected increase in the price of crude oil and the strong value of the U.S. dollar. He pointed out that the crude oil price has increased from a budgeted $57 per barrel in last November to the current $78 per barrel. He said the economic factors have led to the rapid depreciation of the Ghanaian cedi, which in turn has put stress and strain on the pockets of the Ghanaian people. He was, however, optimistic that the situation could be checked in the medium to long term by expanding the supply base of the economic structure and the capacity to export industrial products.

He added that the Food and Jobs program initiated by his government last year increased farmers’ participation from 200,200 to about 500,000 farmers this year. According to the President, about one million farmers are expected to hop on board the program within four years. “That would make Ghana self-sufficient in food and food security.” He remarked that food storage warehouses and irrigation systems – especially in the three northern regions – are being established in each district of Ghana to preserve and aid food productivity. The path we are taking to strengthen our social and physical infrastructure in health, agriculture, industry, and others will bring prosperity to our country,” he emphasized.

All eyes on the President as he speaks

On the financial sector, the President said his government had to take some tough decisions on indigenous banks that faced major challenges through, among other factors, liquidity, insolvency, and bad governance that tend to jeopardize deposits of customers. The Bank of Ghana therefore took painful but necessary measures to liquidate failing banks. Drawing on a similar situation in Nigeria, Nana Addo reminded Ghanaians that about ten years ago, Nigeria had eighty-nine banks with similar challenges, but through prudent measures by its Central Bank, the most populous country in Africa now has only thirty-five banks that are capable of competing with foreign banks operating in Nigeria. “We want to have strong Ghanaian banks throughout West Africa that would be able to compete with other banks. We need our banks to facilitate developments,” he charged.

On his government’s flagship free Senior High School (SHS) program, the exuberant President said some ninety thousand additional students enrolled in SHS last year. The figure doubled to over one hundred eighty thousand students this academic year. He said his government had to come out with innovative and novel idea to accommodate the increase, hence the double-track system. He explained that the double-track system that utilizes existing structures has caught on with Ghanaians so much so that he earned the epithet “Nana Double -Track” while on a recent tour in the Central Region of Ghana. “So far, the system has worked very well,” he sighed. The President opined that compulsory education to up to the level of SHS would be realized by the end of his term in office.

Prior to his speech, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo asked the guests to observe moments of silence in memory of former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan and of the six Ghanaians who lost their lives in a Bronx inferno earlier this year.

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Posted by on Oct 14 2018. Filed under Community News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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