Former president John Mahama has said the Akufo-Addo administration should focus on creating jobs to put money into the pockets of Ghanaians instead of the knee-jerk approach of providing freebies.
According to him, the current government’s incessant desire to give freebies to citizens is a sign that they have failed in investing in the real sectors which could lead to job creation.
Speaking during an interaction with members of the Association of Road Contractors, Mr. Mahama said: “This government is prioritizing consumption; no government develops prioritizing consumption. You have to invest money in the productive sectors and the productive sectors would create jobs and the jobs will create prosperity for the people.
“But if you say everybody should stay at home and we will give you everything free, free; free this, free that. All the countries that have developed, they didn’t develop like that.”
He added: “You must assure the people of jobs; if people are working and getting money what would they need free for if they can afford to pay. And somebody says, let’s have a competition on social intervention; social interventions are consumption. They should say let’s have a competition in who invested more in the real sectors than the other. We were doing 4.7 percent of GDP investment in the real sector, today they can hardly achieve 3 percent.”
His comments come a few weeks after the government announced the extension of free water and electricity to Ghanaians for the next three months to further reduce the burden of the Covid-19 pandemic on the citizenry. The Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta who announced this during his Mid-year Budget review said it is because government puts the concerns and aspirations of the ordinary Ghanaian first.
“That is also why we further reduced electricity prices by half and completely provided potable water for free for everybody since March this year. And we will extend it for another three months,” he told Parliament. In April this year, the president announced three months of free electricity for consumers of a particular category, to make up for lost income following a lockdown in Accra and Kumasi due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
He also announced government’s decision to absorb water bills for all Ghanaians for April, May and June following complaints of lack of portable drinking water in many communities affected by the lockdown.
Source: Daily Mail GH