One Social media fun by name Che Esq @CheEsquire on his Twitter account asked the vice president one (1): very vital question in this period of coronavirus crisis which made the vice President to block him on Twitter. Meanwhile, the Vice Prez. Dr. Muhammadu Bawumia once asked the late formal Vice Prez. Kwesi Amissah Arthur one hundred and seventy (170) questions, which he regarded as rhetorical questions by the then vice Prez. Amissah Arthur but Dr. Muhammadu Bawumia insisted he should answer those questions.
kobbyonews captured this whiles we were searching through the internet for things that happened within the week which many people didn’t noticed.
Below is the issue at hand
STATE OF THE GHANAIAN ECONOMY: THE FACTS AS PRESENTED IN DR. BAWUMIA’S LECTURE
Speaking at the National Democratic Congress (NDC) final rally in Accra, the Vice President said after going through the said questions, he realised that they were merely statements or facts on the ground, which do not demand answers.
The then Vice President ‘Kwesi Amissah Arthur’ said that he will ignore the 170 questions put forth by the then Running Mate of the New Patriotic Party, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia.
Below are the 170 questions asked by the then running mate, now the Vice President of the republic of Ghana
1. Under the 8 years of the NPP government, from 2001-2008, taxes and loans amounted to GH¢20 billion. In contrast, taxes, oil revenue, and loans alone over the 8-year period of 2009-2016 would amount to some GH¢248billion. 2. Between December 2000 and December 2008, without oil, economic growth increased from 3.7% to 9.1%. After declining to 4.8% in 2009, real GDP growth increased to 7.7% in 2010 and 14% in 2011 following the onset of oil production. Since 2011 however, real GDP growth has declined steadily and drastically to 3.9% in 2015. 3. Between 2000 and 2008, the size of Ghana’s economy increased from some $5.1 billion to $28.5 billion, a 459% increase in eight years. Even in the face of a global economic and financial crisis in 2007/8 (with oil prices reaching a record high of $147/barrel), economic growth in 2008 rose to 9.1%. However, Ghana’s GDP, notwithstanding the discovery of oil, has only increased from $28.5 billion in 2008 to a projected $40 billion in 2016 (a 40% increase in eight years). However, between 2012 and 2016 i.e. during John Mahama’s tenure as president, the economy, in dollar terms, shrunk by 5%. 4. Under the NDC, GDP per capita has recorded a growth of 17% (from $1,266 in 2008 to a projected $1,481 in 2016) with oil revenue. Under John Mahama’s tenure as president (2012-2016), GDP per capita has declined by 12%. Under NPP on the other hand, GDP per capita recorded a growth of 187% in 8 years (from $440 to $1,266) without oil revenues. While the NPP increased per capita incomes by $826 during its term, the NDC, with twelve times more resources, has increased per capita incomes by only $215 5. In dollar terms, under the NDC, the minimum wage declined from $2.12 to $2.02 by 2016 (i.e. by 4.6%). Between 2012 and 2016 (during the tenure of President Mahama) the minimum wage in dollar terms declined by 23.6%! In comparison, the NPP increased the minimum wage from the equivalent of $0.62 in 2000 to $2.12 in 2008 (i.e. by 244%). 6. While income inequality as measured by the change in minimum wage relative to the change in national income improved (by 1.8%) during the 2001 to 2008 period, it has seen a major decline since 2008, with the worst decline (-5%) occurring during John Mahama’s tenure as President. 7. According to the United Nations Human Development Index (a measure of progress in income, literacy and life expectancy), for the period 2000-2014, Ghana made the most progress in human development between 2000 and 2010. The average growth rates of Ghana’s UNDP Human Development Index has declined from 1.33 (between 2000-2010) to 1.13 (between 2010-2014). 8. Ghana’s food import bill has increased dramatically from US$600 million in 2008 to $2.1 billion in 2015 (Figure 7). Rice imports, for example, rose by 52% from 395,400 metric tonnes in 2008 to over 600,000 metric tonnes in 2015. 9. We should recall that the economy ended in 2012 with a fiscal deficit (on a commitment basis) of 12.2% of GDP, 11.7% of GDP in 2013 and 11.9% of GDP in 2014 This was the first time in Ghana’s history that double-digit fiscal deficits were recorded for three consecutive years (and this occurred under John Mahama’s presidency) 10. Taxes on businesses have increased dramatically and new taxes have been introduced. For example, increases in capital gains tax (from 10% to 25%), withholding tax (from 15% to 20%) and the introduction of the Energy Levy (10%), VAT on Electricity (17.5%), VAT on Financial Services (17.5%), Special Import Levy, etc. Taxes have also been introduced on ambulances and bicycles. 11. As a resort of the deep fiscal hole, the government has resorted to cutting and abolishing all forms of allowances and expenditure that cross their mind as “abolishable”. These insensitive cuts have included cuts to research allowances for lecturers, nursing training, and teacher training allowances. 12. The government is also accumulating arrears in payments to contractors and other service providers. 13. Ghana is experiencing is a unique type of fiscal consolidation which has defied all expectations. Ghana’s fiscal consolidation is apparently taking place in the midst of unsustainably high public debt levels, inflation that is stubbornly high and is currently at 16.7% (the 8th highest in Africa). 14. A rising black hole of state-owned enterprise (SOE) debt, which together with the debts owed by the government to the bulk oil distribution companies (BDCs) and the lack of adequate supervision of microfinance companies can potentially collapse the banking system. In addition, we have rising interest rates, crowding out of the private sector, reduced business confidence, and declining economic growth. 15. The IMF has stated that it has not concluded the third review of Ghana’s program which was expected to go to the Board in June this year. Amongst the reasons stated by the IMF for the nonconclusion of the third review is that the fiscal data for 2015 is yet to be “reconciled”. 16. The 2016 supplementary budget has further muddied the waters by revealing a large unexplained “Discrepancy” of GH¢1.7 billion in 2016. It is a figure that the government has been unable to explain. 17. Following the adoption and implementation of the HIPC initiative and the Government’s policy framework of fiscal discipline, the country’s debt to GDP ratio had declined from 189% in 2000 to 32% of GDP. At the end of 2008, Ghana’s total debt amounted to GH¢9.5 billion. However, in the last seven years alone under this NDC government, Ghana’s total debt has ballooned from GH¢9.5 billion to GH¢100 billion by the end of 2015 and GH¢105 billion in May 2016!
Solved the energy problem and not put the country through 5 years of Dumsor at the cost of human lives and collapsing businesses and unemployment.
Put in place at least 1000 kilometres of asphalt road in each region. There would be no major road problem left in any region after this.
Transformed Agriculture in the Northern regions, Afram Plains and the rest of Ghana through investment in machinery, irrigation and dams.
Put in place one world class hospital in each region.
Buy at least 1000 ambulances for the Ghana Ambulance Service.
Set up factories with the private sector across the country to add value to our raw materials and create jobs create.
Equip our existing health and education institutions with the state of the art facilities.
Build an additional 600 of the Senior High Schools the government is currently trying to build.
Construct the Accra-Kumasi-Paga railway as well as the Western Railway line. 70. The evidence shows that notwithstanding the massive increase in the debt stock, capital expenditure as a percentage (%) of GDP has actually been on the decline from 9.1% of GDP in 2008 to 3.9% by 2015 . Capital expenditure as a percentage of GDP averaged 11% for 2001-2008 (without oil) while that for 2009-2015 has averaged 5.7% (with oil). 71. Indeed, it was His Excellency President Mahama who told us that any government touting infrastructure projects as achievements is engaging in an exercise in mediocrity. 72. The NPP government of 2001-2008 undertook significant infrastructure investment across the various sectors: education, health, roads, energy, etc. WATER PROJECTS (EXAMPLES) 73. Cape coast 74. Tamale 75. Ada/Sege
76. Winneba 77. Barekese system expansion 78. Weija system expansion 79. Baafikrom water expansion
80. Akwapim. Ridge 81. Akim Oda Water
82. Koforidua Expansion
83. New Tafo Rehabilitation
84. Winneba Expansion
85. Kwanyaku Expansion
86. Bawjiase Water Extension
87. Brimsu Dredging
88. Sekondi Takoradi Expansion
89. Kumasi Expansion
90. East-West Accra Interconnection EDUCATION PROJECTS (EXAMPLES) 91. Construction of Bolgatanga Polytechnic
92. Construction of Wa Polytechnic
93. Established the University of Mines and Technology at Tarkwa
94. 38 Teacher training colleges upgraded to diploma awarding institutions with massive infrastructure upgrade and 15 designated as science colleges
95. 56 model senior secondary schools started and 31 completed
96. 130 classrooms for polytechnics 97. 31 lecture Theatre halls built at various university campuses
98. Medical school at University of Cape Coast 99. 1,334 new JHS blocks
100. 1,331 primary schools HEALTH (EXAMPLES) Construction and rehabilitation of Hostels, Classroom blocks, offices, and doctors’ flats in various Nursing Training Colleges (NTCs), Midwifery Training Schools (MTS), Community Health Nursing Training Schools in places such as:
101. Rehabilitation of Sefwi Wiawso hospital
102. Construction of 4 hospitals at Juabeso Bia, New Edubiase, Bimbila, Nkwanta,
103. 37 Military Hospital was expanded and considerably refurbished
104. Construction of College of Physicians and Surgeons
105. The introduction of a National Ambulance System 106. Secured €54million Dutch grant for the upgrade of Tamale Regional Hospital) to Tamale Teaching Hospital 107. New district hospitals initiated at Wa, Kumasi South, Manhyia, Konongo Odumasi, Adenta/Madina, Tepa, and Salaga. Polyclinics at Karaga, Kpandai, Tatale, Buipe, Janga and Chereponi ROADS AND HIGH WAYS (EXAMPLES -2001-2008) 108. Accra-Yamorasa
111. Manso-Asankragwa 112. Axim Junction- Tarkwa
113. Abuakwa – Bibiani
115. Pantang- Mamfe
118. Tamale- Yendi
119. Malam interchange
120. Mallam-Tetteh Quarshie (N1)
122. Axim Junction- Tarkwa
123. Pantang – Mamfe
124. Tetteh Quarshie Interchange
125. Ashaiman – Motorway Flyover 126. Achimota Interchange 127.
126. Achimota Interchange
127. Alajo – Avenor
128. Asafo Interchange
129. Ofankor – Nsawam (17.6 km)
130. Apedwa – Bunso (22.0km)
131. Bunso Anyinam (11.5km)
132. Anyinam – Konongo (89.1km)
133. Konongo – Ejisu – Kumasi (44.6km) ENERGY SECTOR PROJECTS (EXAMPLES) 134. Oil Discovered in commercial quantities
135. West African Gas Pipeline Project. 136. Bui Dam 137. June 2007, in response to the energy crisis, a total of 200 megawatts of generation capacity had already been installed through the Emergency Power as well the Mines Reserve Plants of 126 MW and 80 MW capacities respectively 138. Other plants were initiated, designed, negotiated and contracted by the Kufuor government to be installed, and were at various stages of implementation. These include the 126 megawatts VRA Tema Thermal 1 Plant, the 50 megawatts Tema Thermal 2 Plant, the 220 megawatts Kpone Thermal Plant as well as the 126 megawatts Osono Plant. 139. The construction of the 132 megawatts Plant at Aboadze called Takoradi 1 Plant was initiated in 2007 as a 220 megawatts plant by the Kufuor government. 140. The 220 megawatts Sunon Asogli Plant was completed towards the end of the Kufuor administration,
OTHER PROJECTS 141. Golden Jubilee House or Flagstaff House
142. World class stadia rehabilitation in Accra and Kumasi
143. New stadia built in Essipong (Takoradi) and Tamale
144. Jubilee Parks in all regional capitals
145. Accra-Tema Commuter Railway line
146. Peduase Lodge renovation
147. Rehabilitation of Tamale, Kumasi and Takoradi airports
148. Rehabilitation and expansion works at the Kotoka International Airport, Tema and Takoradi Harbours
149. Kofi Annan Centre of Excellence for IT 150. A key difference between NPP and NDC, however, is that the impact of the NPP’s infrastructure investment along with structural reforms and prudent economic policies of President J.A. Kufuor was felt positively in the economy with: 151. A significant increase in GDP growth from 3.7% to 9.1% without oil 152. Reduction in corporate taxes to boost business growth
153. A massive improvement in cocoa production
154. The National Youth Employment Programme –providing opportunities and jobs for the youth to get a start in the job market
155. The School Feeding Programme to provide food to pupils in basic schools
156. A Capitation Grant to make education affordable and accessible
157. The National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) to provide accessible healthcare to the population.
158. Free maternal care for all pregnant women under the NHIS.
159. The introduction of a Metro Mass Transit transport service for urban areas to provide subsidised transport for commuters and a free bus ride for basic school pupils.
160. Introduction of the Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty (LEAP) programme under which welfare grants are paid to the extreme poor.
161. Payment of nursing and teacher training allowances even when the country was HIPC
162. The massive expansion in the financial sector
163. A fall in lending rates and wide access to credit for the private sector to expand 164. We should recall that on August 30th, 2012, President Mahama stated during his acceptance speech in Sunyani that “The NDC government for the past three and a half years has been laying the foundation for a transformational take off of the country’s development” 165. On December 5th, 2012, President Mahama’s Information Minister stated with regards to the economy that “we want to invest in jobs and in people, in the economy which is part of the prevailing better Ghana agenda. We have already laid the foundation, we have taken off and we want to soar” 166. The NDC 2012 Manifesto states that “This Manifesto is based on the achievements over the last four years, during which period we established firm foundation for delivering a program of economic recovery and sustained welfare for the people of Ghana” 167. The fact is that the worst period of economic performance since 2001 has been under President Mahama’s stewardship between 2012 and 2016. 168. Indeed, during the NPP tenure between 2001 and 2008, corporate taxes were slashed from 32% to 25% and tax revenue actually increased! 169. The data shows that notwithstanding (or because of) the high level of taxes, there is a revenue shortfall of GH¢700 million for the first half of 2016 170. The Auditor General’s Report has indicated that between 2012 and 2014, GH¢5.9 billion of government funds cannot be accounted for.