It is rather absurd for the leaders of the main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) to be bickering and fussing over the supposedly unprecedentedly exponential increase in the national debt (See “We Didn’t Borrow GhȻ 80 Bn – Info Minister” Daily Guide/Modernghana.com 6/7/19). It is absurd because it was the leaders of the National Democratic Congress who introduced the much-detested vocabulary of “Judgment Debt” into the socioeconomic and political lexicon of Ghana. The nation-wrecking scam that was the judgment-debt modus operandi of the key operatives of the National Democratic Congress, whereby a remarkable number of our elected leaders and parliamentary representatives nihilistically and unpatriotically colluded with foreign contractors to rob the Ghanaian taxpayer of billions of dollars by deliberately refusing to show up in court to vigorously defend the State and/or the government of the day against the wanton and criminal extortion of the Ghanaian taxpayer, in exchange for a cut or a tiny percentage of hefty court-imposed fines, is scarcely the hallmark of politicians and leaders who really care about the well-being of our nation. The judges themselves did not honorably conduct themselves as if they had any remarkable modicum of pride in their identity and nationality as Ghanaians. For the most part, they behaved like some “Afropean” expatriates.
This is what Ghanaians need to be talking about, and not the patently frivolous question of whether the Akufo-Addo Administration has borrowed more in two-and-half years of stewardship than former President John Dramani Mahama did in four-and-half years. We also need to emphasize the incontrovertible fact that the quality of life of the average well-educated Ghanaian citizen is far better than what it was under four-and-half years of Dumsor-promoted and supervised Mahama regime. Merely putting up a few buildings and constructing a handful of “Dubai-Plagiarizing” highways and tollbooths does not an enviable nation build. Balance the foregoing with the massive production of youthful illiteracy, and it becomes extremely terrifying to discover that under the Mahama maladministration of the people’s business, as it were, Ghanaians were fast and dangerously headed towards no sounder and better stage of socioeconomic development than the Old-Stone Age.
Let’s face this fact: What is really the use of constructing “Dubai”-like highways and flyovers that are veritable white elephants that cannot be traveled or plied after every downpour in our nation’s capital and other cities and towns around the country? What of the effective bankrupting of the John Agyekum-Kufuor-implemented National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS)? Then also, we need to add to the national debt, the double salaries that former President John Dramani Mahama and his hoodlum pack of robber-baron cabinet appointees regularly and criminally paid themselves during the four-and-half years that these legally certified kleptocrats occupied the reins of governance. Indeed, as we just learned from the quick- and deep-thinking Akufo-Addo Information Minister, Mr. Kojo Oppong-Nkrumah, the alleged GhȻ 80 billion in national debt includes a remarkable percentage of loans inherited from the outgoing Mahama regime, some of which had been contracted scarcely 24 hours after the National Democratic Congress was massively voted out of the erstwhile Flagstaff House.
In brief, what the present government urgently needs to do is to break down the GhȻ 80 billion into loans contracted by the Mahama regime and passed on to the incoming Akufo-Addo Administration, and loans contracted by the ruling New Patriotic Party. Already, Mr. Oppong-Nkrumah has convincingly exposed the lie that is the NDC’s ballpark figure of our national debt, by clearly pointing out the fact that the liquidity or the country’s capacity for contracting commercial loans could scarcely have exceeded between $ 500 million and $ 700 million (USD) per annum. What the foregoing means is that even at a maximum borrowing capacity, the New Patriotic Party government could not have exceeded some $ 3 billion (USD) in the two-and-half years that President Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and his executive appointees have wielded the reins of governance.
Even more significant, the NPP needs to fashion a major electioneering campaign agenda around the massive bailout of the banks and other quack financial services establishments recklessly and criminally used by the Mahama regime to literally run Ghana’s economy aground. According to Mr. Oppong-Nkrumah, the bank bailouts alone cost the country some GhȻ 12 billion. It is also quite obvious that having woefully failed to regress or retard the development pace of the Akufo-Addo Administration, the desperate operatives of the National Democratic Congress have decided to take another tack or tactical strategy of making the most progressive and effective Fourth-Republican government unpopular by making it seem as if at 57-percent of Ghana’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), the New Patriotic Party has far exceeded the historically unprecedented 74-percent of the country’s GDP that was bequeathed the Akufo-Addo Administration by the Mahama regime. Fat chance!
*Visit my blog at: kwameokoampaahoofe.wordpress.com Ghanaffairs
By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., PhD
English Department, SUNY-Nassau
Garden City, New York
June 7, 2019
E-mail: [email protected]
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