Bernard Anim Piesie, a member of the Communication team of largest opposition NDC, has expressed doubts over claims by the Akufo-Addo government that the economy is robust enough to withstand the impact of the novel Coronavirus pandemic.
Speaking at a press briefing, Information Minister Kojo Oppong Nkrumah noted that Ghana’s economy under the Akufo-Addo regime is resilient and therefore capable of getting back into good shape.
President Nana Akufo-Addo, during his regular update on COVID-19, also promised to construct 88 districts and 6 Regional hospitals in one year.
The President’s pledge has courted controversies with the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) not believing the promise will see the light of the day and further disclosing that the President has abandoned other existing health facilities that commenced under the erstwhile Mahama government.
But to the Information Minister, the government’s ability to introduce various interventions to fight against the virus infections in the country is largely dependent on the robust economy it has built since its inception in 2017.
“It makes sense why some may question whether or not Ghana can afford all the interventions the President has outlined in the past about 8 weeks of the Covid-19 response program. This question is justified because looking at our recent economic position, and the gains made recently as a nation, there is the genuine fear that we may be unable to afford the interventions or may end up overstretched if indeed we push through to execute them all.
“Between January 2017 and now, however, Ghana has made major strides in correcting the precarious economic conditions it found itself in. Our Fiscal position has improved and our Macro position has significantly improved. The combined effect of improved fiscal position and improved macro position is what enables us to afford the interventions which are being introduced as part of the COVID-19 response program. We have significantly improved national revenues, trimmed our deficit, and yielded a resilient macro position against which we can finance the intervention programs,” he said.
Reacting to the government’s position of having built a robust economy, Anim Piesie advised Ghanaians to take such claims with a pinch of salt because the government is only dabbling in propaganda.
He told host Kwami Sefa Kayi on Peace FM’s ‘Kokrokoo’ program that this government has decided to blind the people of Ghana to the truth that the COVID-19 pandemic has exposed about the leadership of President Akufo-Addo.
He cited the country’s health sector and socio-economic fabric being greatly affected by the pandemic that it is nothing short of deception to tell Ghanaians the economy is strong and robust, meanwhile there is a clear picture of what the government has been able to achieve over the years which the pandemic has helped to unveil before the eyes of the citizenry.
“It’s time for us to be truthful to the nation when in government. Because if, in one month less than 2 months, COVID shocks can weaken our absorbers and there is no progress, we plead with the NPP to give the true state of our economy. The propaganda is too much. Ruling the nation with propaganda doesn’t bring development.
“The government should stop these rhetorics and make available the necessary resources, provide adequate PPEs and support including the existing facilities that will help to cushion us in these trying times. They should let that be their priority rather than making empty promises,” he said.