The Akufo-Addo/Bawumia administration received massive commendations from a host of international organisations and other prominent individuals prior to the 2020 general elections.
Sometime in 2019, a video clip went vile, purported to be that of a forum, organised by the leadership of the opposition NDC, showing a guest speaker, a Nigerian scholar, candidly commending the Akufo-Addo/Bawumia administration on Ghana’s favourable economic growth before the deadly coronavirus, obviously, to the utter chagrin of his hosts (the NDC Executives), many of whom were befuddled on the guest speaker’s unbelievable intellectual honesty.
The overarching question then is: Did the NDC loyalists really trust the judgement of the said knowledgeable and largely credible Nigerian academic?
Well, I am pretty sure they did; else they would not have invited him to speak on Ghana’s economy at their special gathering.
Interestingly, preceding the honest and erudite Nigerian’s endorsement of Ghana’s well-publicised propitious economic growth, were praises from some credible international organisations and influential people, both home and abroad.
Unsurprisingly, prior to the 2020 general elections, the reputable Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) reported that the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) was going to retain power (see: ‘2020 election is yours to lose-EIU predicts NPP victory’; myjoyonline.com/ghanaweb.com, 15/09/2019).
The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) report concluded that former President John Dramani Mahama was going to find it extremely difficult to convince discerning Ghanaians into accepting that he is the preferable manager of Ghana’s economy, given the country’s fairly strong economic growth under Akufo-Addo/Bawumia administration before the pernicious coronavirus.
But despite the reputable organisations and other prominent people’s positive remarks on Ghana’s economy back then, the naysayers were never inspired. But were we really surprised? No, after all, hasn’t it written: ‘no prophet is accepted in his homeland’?
Back then, I humbly questioned the judgement of those who were proclaiming somewhat brashly that Ghana’s economy under former President Mahama (3.4% growth and 15.4% inflation) was better than Akufo-Addo/Bawumia record before the insidious coronavirus (8.6% growth and 7.5% inflation).
Suffice it to emphasise that before the deadly coronavirus, Bawumia dutifully assisted Akufo-Addo and raised Ghana’s economic growth from 3.4% to 8.6%.
Truly, it was Bawumia who admirably assisted Akufo-Addo and within a short space of time reversed the inflation from 15.4% to 7.5%.
Interestingly, in the first two years of the Akufo-Addo/Bawumia administration, the Agriculture sector recorded the highest growth rate of 8.4%.
Indeed, the Agriculture sector expanded from a growth rate of 3.0 percent in 2016 to 8.4 percent in 2017 (GSS, 2018).
The Akufo-Addo/Bawumia administration, before the unspeakable coronavirus, recorded the highest growth rate of 16.7 % in the Industry sector.
The Industry sector, the highest-growing sector with a GDP share of 25.5 percent, had its growth rate increasing from -0.5 percent in 2016 to 16.7 percent in 2017 (GSS, 2018).
Truth be told, Ghana’s economy received thumbs-up from the likes of the then Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Ms Christine Lagarde, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, Philip Alston, and other reputable international organisations, who had earlier commended the Akufo-Addo/Bawumia administration on its excellent economic performance in the two and half years in office.
In 2017, the Bloomberg News, for example, predicted Ghana to become “Africa’s fastest-growing economy in 2018 “and Ghana was proclaimed “Star of Africa in 2018 Lenders’ Economic Forecasts”.
In reporting on the same fiscal policy achievements, Le Monde pointed out that “Ghana’s economic success is not just as the result of an oil-driven boom, but is also due to prudent economic management, an entrepreneurial population, the role of traditional leaders, and good governance.”
The then Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Ms Christine Lagarde’s observed that the Ghanaian economy, before the insidious coronavirus, was in a better place than it was in the previous years under the John Dramani Mahama administration.
Ms Lagarde opined that the Akufo-Addo/Bawumia administration made important gains towards macroeconomic stability, including inflation, which declined to a single digit and within the Bank of Ghana’s (BoG’s) tolerance band; buoyant growth, averaging about five per cent in 2018, and, over six per cent in 2017-18) and a primary surplus in 2017 for the first time in 15 years (IMF 2018).
The Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, Philip Alston, observed: “Ghana met the targets for halving extreme poverty and halving the proportion of people without access to safe drinking water, and it achieved the goals relating to universal primary education and gender parity in primary school.
The ace journalist, Kweku Baako Jnr hit the nail on the head when he pointed out on Joy FM’s political show (News File) on Saturday 6/04/2019 that the NPP administration led by President Akufo-Addo has performed exceedingly better than the erstwhile NDC government led by former President Mahama.
Comparing the state of the economy in first two years of the two administrations, Kweku Baako Jnr aptly concluded that the economy is in a better shape under the Akufo-Addo/Bawumia administration than it was under the Mahama administration.
Baako Jnr, therefore, asserted poignantly: “There’s no doubt that the Akufo-Addo/Bawumia administration has done far better than the Mahama administration; it’s as simple as that, the figures and the records support it (myjoyonline.com, 6/04/2019).”
Some of us have always held an unfailing conviction that governance is a serious business and as such it requires forward thinking, serious and committed group of people to bring about the needed progress.