I have the track record - Nduom
Dr. Paa Kwesi Nduom, flag bearer of the Convention People's Party (CPP) on Wednesday called on the electorate to judge his political talks based on his track record as a "dependable employer".
"Dr Kwame Nkrumah, Flt Lt Jerry John Rawlings and Mr John Agyekum Kufuor will not be on Election 2008 ballot papers so we need to focus on the way forward, I am not looking backward but if they want us to compare records then we must look at the individual Presidential candidate's records of accomplishment," Dr Nduom stated.
"It is not only the strength and membership of a political party that governs the nation, but rather the competency, dedication and efficiency of a leader to rule a nation," he stressed.
"I believe in competition as regard to what you have done and what I have also done and can do," he stated in Accra at a platform created by the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) for the four flag bearers whose parties have representation in parliament dubbed: "An Evening Encounter With Presidential Candidates."
The Evening Encounter seeks to provide the platform to presidential candidates of four political parties with representation in parliament to educate the electorate on their vision and plans.
The programme is collaboration by the IEA, Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC) and Joy FM, an Accra-based private radio station.
The CPP flag bearer said he would replicate the economic boom enjoyed in the early days of the Nkrumah regime.
Dr Nduom said his government would improve the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) to extend accessibility to healthcare in the country.
He said the country still lacked good drinking water, safe roads, good schools and jobs for everybody, especially the youth.
"The next 50 years should be used to develop these as well as making people feel monies in their pockets."
Dr Nduom also spoke against the inequality between the North and the South in development, saying a future CPP government would address the problems that have led to the slow pace of development in the North.
"On my way to Wa, I noticed that potholes have already developed within the tarred portions of Wenchi-Wa road but take Kasoa to Yamoransa, it is all asphalt. The people of the three regions need better roads than that".
He said the party when voted into power would rehabilitate factories like the Kumasi Jute Factory; Pwalugu Tomato Factory; Asutuare Sugar Factory and neglected State hotels such as the Meridian; Atlantic and Ambassador Hotels in Tema, Takoradi and Accra, in that order, to offer employment to the country's youth.
Dr Nduom said Ghanaians were yearning for a government that would provide them with the basic necessities of life such as jobs, shelter, good drinking water, quality education, health and "the freedom to choose to be".
Mrs Jean Mensah, Executive Director of the IEA said the Evening Encounter programme was for presidential candidates and "no substitute would be allowed to speak or make a presentation on behalf of a flag bearer".
She said the "Encounter" would also enable "the electorate to discern what each candidate stands for, what each aspirant intends to do and the direction in which each aspirant intends to take Ghana".
Mrs Mensah explained that the programme would also serve as a way of ensuring that the electorate took ownership of the electoral process and provided a forum for accountability from the candidates even before they became president.
She said: "It is the hope of the IEA that this "Encounter" will divert political discourse from one of acrimony and personality attacks to an issue-based debate.
"The electorate would be enabled through the "Encounter" to debate, analyse and critique the various aspirants to determine how realistic these plans are. This would deepen and promote multiparty democracy and good governance."
Other presidential candidates expected are Prof. John Evans Atta Mills of the National Democratic Congress, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo of the New Patriotic Party and Dr Edward Mahama of the People's National Convention.