The Minority in Parliament has condemned the Akufo-Addo government for what it claims is an 'unreasonable decision'  to halt the recruitment of more than 8,600 nurses.

At a press conference Wednesday, Minority leader Haruna Iddrisu said these nurses had obtained the necessary financial clearance from the Ministry of Finance to be added to the public payroll and were awaiting the final step to land a job.

But government despite promising jobs has betrayed the 'honest belief' of these nurses many of whom may have bought into the New Patriotic Party's (NPP) campaign promises, Mr Iddrisu said. 

Akufo-Addo gov't stopped recruitment of over 8,600 nurses - Minority delivers 'real' SONA

The claims were part of a litany of issues put together by the Minority in its official reaction to the President's State of the Nation Address delivered to Parliament Tuesday.

Akufo-Addo in his maiden State of the Nation Address lamented that "for too many young people, unemployment is sadly the reality of the start to their adult life"

"We are now faced with the phenomenon of parents looking on in frustration as their grown-up children remain at home, without the means to strike an independent life by themselves."

He described the lack of jobs as "unprecedented", "debilitating" and a confidence-sapping problem among the youth.

Making good on its promise to provide what the National Democratic Congress (NDC) in parliament described as the 'real' state of the nation, the Minority leader surrounded by his caucus members read a speech highlighting neglected developments across the country.

The Minority expressed surprise that an ongoing process kickstarted by the former government with the goal of recruiting more than 20,000 nurses has been stopped.

Mr Iddrisu who was Labour minister under the erstwhile NDC government said this ministry had been working with the Ghana Registered Nurses Association to process applications for jobs.

Only 8,634 had secured the go-ahead to be posted only for the new government to disrupt the process.

"These are the young people they promised jobs" he said and stressed that "the young people do not care about which [government] gave financial clearance. What they want is bread and butter".

Adding to the list of youth denied jobs, Mr Iddrisu said government also kicked out 65 police recruits who were undergoing training to join the service and dismissed some 590 other security personnel.

The dismissals also include 205 employees of National Service Scheme (NSS) and 110 middle-level staff of COCOBOD who have been asked to go home since the government took over on January 7, 2017.

These stopped recruitments and dismissals are all down the "petty partisanship" of the NPP government, the Minority leader said collating the job losses and disappointments at about 9,739 Ghanaians.

"God save this country" he expressed dismay and said the actions of the NPP government are reminiscent of the Busia-era government between 1969 and 1972.

Akufo-Addo gov't stopped recruitment of over 8,600 nurses - Minority delivers 'real' SONA

In what became known as 'Apollo 568', the Busia government engaged in summary dismissals of several public sector employees in a move believed to have targeted Ewes. 

The Chief Executive of the Daily Graphic, Mathias Ofori had his appointment terminated in 1972.

"After working for 20 years with the corporation, a dispatch rider from the castle brought my dismissal letter one weekend whilst on duty'' he remembered during the National Reconciliation Commission hearings in 2001.

Haruna believes the current actions of the NPP, which traces its ideological roots to Dr. Busia's Progress Party, should be condemned.

It is not clear what may have lead to the dismissals and termination of employment as claimed by the NDC in Parliament.

The NPP during the transition promised to cancel 'last minute' contracts and appointments after it lost power.

The NPP transition team complained the decisions were made without consulting the incoming government.

During the vetting of the Senior minister-designate Yaw Osafo Maafo, he told the Appointments Committee of Parliament, "if names appear on the payroll after December, we will definitely lay them off quietly…I can see it happening.”

Youthful unemployment was a major sparring point between the NPP and NDC during the 2016 campaign. Nurses, in particular, were set on a collision course with the NDC government.

Akufo-Addo gov't stopped recruitment of over 8,600 nurses - Minority delivers 'real' SONA

From 2014 to 2016, the Ghana Nurse & Midwife Trainees Association and several agitating groups of nurses, who had completed their training, hit the streets demanding jobs.

The NPP then in opposition has accused the NDC government of freezing public sector jobs in obedience to an IMF conditionality.

The government, however, explained it was only a net freeze on public jobs suggesting it could employ in cases where a vacancy had been created because an employee had resigned, retired or had died.

The NDC government said the net freeze did not affect health and education sector where it was not constrained to hire.

In the 3-year bailout programme the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the Ghana government had set a target to reduce public sector wage bill to 35% of government revenue by 2017. As at 2015, the wage bill ratio to tax revenue was 49.2 percent.

The net freeze, the IMF said was a part of measures to restore macroeconomic stability.