The New Patriotic Party (NPP) is asking Ghanaians not to risk their future by returning the NDC to power.
“The fact that the NDC was the first political party to elect its flag bearer nearly two years ago, and yet the last major political party to launch its manifesto suggests that the NDC either lacks original ideas or has a sense of inertia.
This presages how the party would approach the problems of the country if they are elected, Mr Peter Mac Manu, National Chairman of the NPP, said this at a news conference in Accra.
Articulating why the NPP had the best programme for Ghana, he described the NDC as a party that could not blaze the trail in anything and therefore “cannot lead in solving national problems.”
He said instead of telling Ghanaians about their plans, the flag bearer, National Chairman and founder of the NDC, Prof J.E.A. Mills, Dr Kwabena Adjei and Mr J.J. Rawlings, respectively made statements inconsistent with the facts and were also insincere.
Mr Mac Manu said while in one breath the NDC was discrediting the policies of the NPP, both implemented and in the manifesto, it was at the same time promising to continue with those policies with little tinkering.
He mentioned some of the policies as the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), the National Youth Employment Programme (NYEP), School Feeding Programme, Metro Mass Transit System and the Northern Ghana Development Fund.
He said some inaccuracies in the NDC manifesto was that growth in 2007 was 6.3 per cent and not 5.8 per cent, the current national debt at the end of June was Gh¢ 7.8 billion, and not 91 trillion cedis as the NDC claims.
“What is important is the size of the nation's debt as compared to the size of the economy. Under the NPP, that had fallen from 189 per cent of GDP under the NDC to 48 per cent”, the NPP National Chairman added.
He contended that the NDC's pledge to introduce a one-time premium instead of the annual premium charges normally associated with insurance schemes would endanger the scheme and render it cash strapped.
“They now say they will maintain the NYEP which Mr John Mahama, the NPP running mate, has said the NDC would phase out with minor tinkering. They now say they will continue the Metro Mass Transit System, which they have repeatedly criticised, with minor modifications. Timidity and insincerity” he said.
He recalled that when Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the NPP flag bearer, pledged a one billion Northern Regional Development Fund, Mr John Mahama ridiculed it and contended that the NDC had copied the concept and given it a different name, Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA).
Mr Mac Manu said according to the NDC's own projections, their plan would get Ghana to middle income status, GDP of $1,000, until 2020, while on the other hand, according to figures from the World Bank and Bank of Ghana, among others, per capita GDP which was $270 in 2000 rose to $ 677 in 2007, under the NPP and was on course to reach $1,000 in 2012.
“With the GDP now at $717 per annum, the NPP and the hardworking people of Ghana have added $447 in the last seven years. The NDC wants Ghanaians to wait for 12 more years to add $300 to our per capita income” he added.
He said the NPP's impressive management of the economy had earned the country debt forgiveness, Millennium Challenge Account, the over-suscription of Ghana's sovereign bond issue and the designation of Ghana as one of the best places to do business.
Mr Mac Manu debunked the claim by the NDC that there was growing inequalities and social exclusion in Ghana since 2001.
Story by Donald Ato Dapatem