The 2020 flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress, John Mahama, has criticised President Akufo-Addo over what he says is “an unpardonable show of disrespect and insensitivity to the plight of the suffering masses.”

Speaking in Accra to climax his two-day ‘Thank You’ tour of the Greater Accra Region, Mr. Mahama wondered why President Akufo-Addo has decided to abandon the presidential jet, causing the country to spend millions of cedis on ‘luxurious’ private jets.

According to him, the presidential jet is well equipped for all international travels, adding that “the misuse of scarce resources on the avoidable creature comforts of the President and other leading officials must come to an end.”

“The ostentation and opulence that have characterized the spending of taxpayers’ money contrasts sharply with the suffering of the people.”

“The staggering GH¢68 million spent on presidential trips for the first nine months of 2019 alone constituted an unconscionable waste of very limited public resources at a time that the population is being asked to tighten their belts,” he said on Wednesday, November 10.

The former President urged the government to make effective use of the public purse by taking firm decisions that attract investors who can help to boost the country’s economy.

“Resources entrusted into their care must be used judiciously for the public good, not for the excessive comfort of leaders. If this kind of waste was avoided, significant resources could be saved to address some of the more pressing concerns of the people.”

“The critical decisions that must be taken to save the economy from imminent catastrophe must be guided solely by what is prudent and in the national interest, not what is politically expedient.”

He blamed the government for being unwilling to listen to the concerns of the people amidst the dire economic situation, observing that the actions and inactions of the government have been detrimental to the country’s development.

“The most pressing problem is the impact of the ailing economy on livelihoods, prospects and dreams. The consequences of misguided priorities in economic management have led to unbearable hardship, high unemployment and the frustration and despair felt by millions of the youth,” Mr. Mahama noted.

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