The National Chairman of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), Samuel Ofosu-Ampofo, has questioned the impact of government’s economic management team.
According to him, the team, whose potential was touted as ‘solid’, has evaporated like gas.
Speaking at a meeting with the Party’s regional chairmen in the Upper West Region over the weekend, he lamented the increasing cost of living in the country and blamed the situation on the incompetence of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP).
“The solid team has melted and now it has become a gas. And the gas has evaporated into thin air, and you cannot even find it. So what will it profit a man or Ghanaian if you can recite the name of the names of your economic management team, without showing the work that the economic management team can do?
Dr. Bawumia said NDC, we cannot even remember the name of our economic management team. Granted that we cannot remember. We cannot remember their names, but we can remember that under the NDC economic management team, inflation stood still [at a] single digit for 36 months.
But in the NPP where they can mention the economic management team of Yaw Osafo Maafo and Alan Kyeremanten [and so on and so forth], today inflation has hit about 27%”, he said.
The National Chairman of the NDC also accused government of being insensitive to the plight of Ghanaians.
In his submission, he explained that, the current Akufo-Addo regime has turned a deaf ear to the complaint of hardship by citizens from all walks of life; stating that government can longer manage affairs effectively.
“The government seems to have lost control of the management of the economy. The country is virtually on autopilot now. Prices of goods and services have gotten out of hands.
“And we believe that as a government, in situations like this, you need to provide leadership and provide interventions that will let the people know that indeed the government has empathy for the people. But this is a government that is nonchalant. It’s showing that they don’t even care about what is happening”, he said.
The NDC National Chairman continued, “You get up in the morning to go and buy fuel [and] by the afternoon, the prices of fuel have increased. The cedi to dollar and other major currencies have been let loose and there seems to be no end in sight”.
He however assured that a new NDC government will work at ameliorating the sufferings of the masses.
“So the challenges that we are facing now call for deeper reflection and to look for an alternative that has the experience and the capability to manage the economy, you cannot look any further than the NDC”, he said.
Mr. Ofosu-Ampofo’s comments come at a time when hundreds of Ghanaians are continuously lamenting the high cost of living in the country.
This complaints have been triggered by the hike in petroleum prices, as well as the rising inflation.
Ghana’s inflation jumped to 27.6% from the 23.6% recorded in April, 2022, according to recent figures from the Ghana Statistical Service (GSS).
The GSS blamed this on the increase in transport fares and food prices.
According to the Government Statistician, Professor Kobina Annim, the rate of inflations for transport (39.0%), household equipment and maintenance (33.8%), housing, water, gas and electricity (32.3%) and food and non-alcoholic beverages (30.1.6%) were higher than the national average (27.6%).
In May, 2022, 12 of the 13 divisions recorded inflation rates higher than the rolling average from June, 2021 to May, 2022.
Also, the major drivers based on the year-on-year figures show that grapes, which is imported, saw a 100.8% inflation followed by diesel, 81.1%, also imported.
Firewood also saw 73.7% year-on-year inflation.
Meanwhile, Member of Parliament for the Nhyiaeso Constituency, Dr Stephen Amoah has indicated that government is working around the clock to address the increasing cost of living in the country.
According to the NPP lawmaker, he does not think ‘government is sleeping’.
The legislator made these remarks while contributing to discussions on the rising inflation and increased cost of living on Newsfile on Saturday.
In that regard, he told host, Samson Lardy Anyenini that in as much as government is doing its best, there is the need for all other stakeholders to rally behind government’s efforts to make the economy better.
In his view, the country’s economic woes did not start today, hence, the need for a more collective approach to address the situation.
“The problem we’re having today, any honest person will tell you, it’s not today’s issue. It’s been with us [for] years. So I’m preaching to every stakeholder who has what it takes to come on board and let us all make sure [to help]. Sometimes we get it wrong and right, [but]we’re all helping.
At present, it’s on the government, and I don’t think the government is sleeping. The fact is, [we] have 40 year old problems”, he said.
Dr Amoah continued: “If we sat there and our population size has grown from Nkrumah’s time from about 5 million to about 31 million; if you have a situation where just close to 7% [of people] directly in the formal sector pay taxes, and we’re having negative effective tax wage, and these problems have been compounded for years, the government alone [cannot solve them]”.
He also charged government to revise its expenditure patterns.
“There are basic issues we need to check such as our discretionary spending and as government; we should be able to now go down. Even though the government said we’ve cut down by 20%, well accepted. But we can do more”, he added.
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