Wed, 22 May 2024 Feature Article

Open Letter To The NPP’s Economic Wizkid: Dr. Alhaji Mahamadu Bawumia, With All Due Respect, What Kind Of Economics Did You Study?

Open Letter To The NPPs Economic Wizkid: Dr. Alhaji Mahamadu Bawumia, With All Due Respect, What Kind Of Economics Did You Study?

Dear Dr. Alhaji Mahamadu Bawumia,

The economic challenges facing Ghana are a testament to the consequences of your poor economic management. High borrowing, high taxes, low exports, and high imports have exacerbated the country's economic woes under your leadership. Coupled with high production costs, low production levels, and significant budget deficits, these issues have turned prudent economic principles on their head.

Your leadership of the Economic Management Team has failed to address these fundamental issues effectively, as evidenced by misguided policies.

One glaring example is the recent establishment of hostels and training centres in urban areas rather than in rural areas from where these young men and women migrate, a move that defies logic and economic sense.

Rural-urban migration in Ghana has long been driven by a lack of employment opportunities in rural areas. Instead of addressing this root cause by creating jobs and investing in infrastructure in these areas, you have come up with a policy that aggravates migration to the cities.

By establishing training centres in urban areas, the policy not only fails to stem the tide of migration but also exacerbates the problem. This approach is akin to treating the symptoms rather than the disease, leading to an increase in urban population pressure and its associated problems without addressing the underlying lack of rural development and employment opportunities.

To address these issues effectively, policies need to focus on creating sustainable economic opportunities in rural areas, investing in infrastructure, education, and healthcare to improve living standards and make rural life more attractive. Only by addressing the root causes of migration can Ghana hope to achieve balanced and sustainable economic development.

Your economic management strategies have consistently failed to achieve their desired objectives, reflecting a pattern of poorly conceived economic policies. Well, that might be why your discussions have shifted from economics topics like the exchange rates and Balance of Payments to digital innovations like Blockchain Technology.

First, the Nation Builders Corps (NABCO), intended to address unemployment, has faced criticism for being unsustainable and offering only temporary relief rather than long-term solutions.

Similarly, the Gold-for-Oil policy, principally aimed at stabilizing the country's depreciating currency and fuel prices, has not delivered the expected economic benefits, as the cedi continues to depreciate and fuel prices continue to increase, highlighting the inefficacy of such short-sighted policies.

The introduction of the cake-cutting Electronic Transaction Levy (E-levy), intended to increase government revenue, has also been met with public backlash and has fallen short of its revenue targets, indicating a lack of foresight and consideration of public sentiment.

In addition to these flawed policies, the decision by the President to construct the National Cathedral and make you, Alhaji Bawumia, the arrowhead of the project, amidst economic hardship, has sparked significant controversy.

The allocation of substantial public funds to this project, which you spearheaded with your best friend, Reverend Victor Kusi Boateng, aka Kwabena Adu Gyamfi, to connect with the Christian community, has been criticized as an imprudent use of resources, especially given the pressing needs in areas such as healthcare, education, and infrastructure.

These missteps underscore a broader pattern of governance that prioritizes grandiose projects over pragmatic, impactful solutions to the country's economic challenges.

Given this track record, it is not surprising that the policy of establishing hostels and training centres in urban areas rather than addressing rural development is equally ill-conceived.

Just as previous initiatives like NABCO, Gold-for-Oil, E-levy, and the National Cathedral have failed to yield tangible benefits relative to their intended objectives, this latest initiative is likely to dissipate without making any meaningful impact.

The fundamental flaw lies in the failure to address the core issues driving rural-urban migration, thereby perpetuating a cycle of ineffective and superficial solutions to score political points. Ghana deserves better leadership than the ones we have had in the last 12 years.

Shalom shalom!

Yours sincerely,

Ebo Buckman