“Exposing the deceptive flagship promises of President Akufo-Addo: The case of dried-up 1V1D Projects in Northern Ghana”
Good morning distinguished friends from the media.
The NDC as always, remains grateful to you for being a reliable partner in our efforts to enrich our multi-party democracy and deepen accountability on the part of those who are in charge of the governance of this country. We thank you for once again accepting to embark on this trip with us all the way to the Yendi Constituency in the Northern Region.
As a responsible opposition, we seek to redefine the discourse on national issues from the conventional arm-chair debates in Accra, to a facts-driven discourse that measures the true state of affairs on the ground against the fallacious claims of the Akufo-Addo government. And so, in the spirit of evidence-based discourse, we have today brought you to the 1V1D site at Adibo and Nakpachei both in the Yendi Constituency in order to expose the deception behind the so-called flagship 1V1D initiative of President Akufo-Addo.
Indeed, we have always maintained that the One Village, One Dam promise, is a trojan gift, deceptive in appearance, and insincerely packaged to hoodwink the good people of Northern Ghana for their votes. True to our words, the shoddy execution of these 1V1D projects has amply vindicated our long-held position that the whole talk about 1V1D by the Candidate Akufo-Akufo-Addo was a ruse meant for electoral gain and nothing more.
It would be recalled, that on 9th June, 2019, the NDC issued a press statement in which we drew attention to government’s deceptive implementation of its much-touted 1V1D promise in northern Ghana. In that press statement, we bemoaned the fact that the Akufo-Addo government was serving the people of the north with sub-standard excavated ponds and dugouts instead of the promised small-scale irrigation dams which were intended to serve as a source of irrigation for dry season farming in the north. We further explained, that the 1V1D ponds and dugouts government is delivering, constitute a huge financial loss to the state because they have been poorly constructed and cannot serve their intended purpose nor stand the test of time.
Unsurprisingly, the Information Minister, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah came out to dismiss our concerns, claiming that 99% of 1V1D projects were without incident and further accused us of engaging in propaganda.
Again, you would recall that in June 2019, following public outrage from various opinion leaders in Northern Ghana over the poor quality of government’s 1V1D projects, President Akufo-Addo promised to investigate complaints over the quality of the said 1V1D projects. The Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia is reported to have also ordered that payment to some contractors be halted over shoddy work relative to 1V1D projects they had executed.
I am sure you also remember the bombshell from the Minister of Special Development Initiatives, Hon. Hawa Koomson, who when put on the spot by a journalist to answer questions on the shoddy implementation of 1V1D projects, asserted that the amount of GH256,000.00 allocated by government for each 1V1D project was woefully inadequate to construct “any meaningful Dam”. These were the exact words of the Minister of State whose Ministry is championing the 1V1D grand deception.
However, ladies and gentlemen, as it has been the stock in trade of the Akufo-Addo government, and despite numerous reports by you in the media which have highlighted the failure of government’s 1V1D program, and President Akufo-Addo’s own pledge to investigate this fraud, the President himself and his Vice, Dr. Muhamadu Bawumia, have been hypocritically pontificating the supposed success of the 1V1D initiative at the least opportunity, as was witnessed during the 2020 State of the Nation Address presented by the President to the august house of Parliament and the Vice President’s Town Hall meeting recently held in Kumasi.
Only last week, the Minister for Special Development Initiatives herself, mounted a spirited charge both on the floor of Parliament, and in the media, during which she parroted the so-called successful projects under her Ministry, including the fraudulent 1V1D initiative.
Colleagues from the media, we have brought you here today, so that you who are the fourth estate of the realm will ascertain for yourselves, whether or not, the 1V1D project you are seeing here in Nakpachei in the Yendi Constituency even qualifies to be called a dam, let alone “a solution to the irrigation challenges of Northern Ghana” as deceptive President Akufo-Addo and his 419 government would have us believe.
This dried-up 1V1D project that is before you is one of several excavated ponds and dugouts which have been branded as “dams” in the five regions of the North by President Akufo-Addo, ostensibly to spur dry season irrigation. We want you in the media to judge for yourselves, and the larger Ghanaian public, whether these dried-up excavated ponds are serving any useful agricultural purpose for farmers in northern Ghana who badly need water for their crops and livestock.
Friends from the media, whenever we in the NDC tell you that President Akufo-Addo and his NPP are a deceitful lot who only major in lofty rhetorics that always end up as pipe dreams, you do not understand. If we had the luxury of time today, we would have toured other parts of Northern Ghana with you, so you can see for yourselves, the scale of grand deception and its attendant financial loss we are talking about in the name of 1V1D.
However, even though we have limited time for this exercise in the northern region, we will while exposing the deceptive ‘dams’ that President Akufo-Addo is serving the people of the north, show you evidence of proper, well-built small-scale irrigation dams constructed by the erstwhile NDC government under the leadership of President John Dramani Mahama at Zakpalsi and Sakpe, both in the Mion Constituency which is just nearby.
Even though the Mahama-led NDC government did not engage in highfalutin sloganeering under the guise of 1V1D, we constructed several dugouts and proper dams which are being utilized for actual dry season irrigation in the north today. Dams such as the Tamne dam in the Garu district and the Zesiri Small Earth Dam are but a few of the small-scale irrigation dams executed by the Mahama government. These small-scale irrigation dams are not sub-standard excavated ponds like the ones you are seeing here today. On the contrary, these are well-intentioned dams, with irrigation facilities to support all-year-round agriculture.
Ladies and gentlemen, the only way the people of the north will see well-constructed small-scale irrigation dams again, is for the H.E John Dramani Mahama to be re-elected as President of the Republic of Ghana in the upcoming general elections. And we know without a shudder of doubt, that as the Lord liveth, truth will surely triumph over lies and good over evil on 7th December 2020. We know that by the grace of God, the visionary, humble and trustworthy John Dramani Mahama will be given another mandate by Ghanaians to rescue our beloved country from the clutches of this deceptive, clueless, corrupt, wasteful and inept Akufo-Addo government and restore this country back on the path of truth, development, and progress.
Distinguished friends from the media, we believe we have amply demonstrated to the Ghanaian people through today’s trip here, that the 1V1D so-called flagship initiative of the Akufo-Addo government has failed to achieve its intended purpose of driving all-year-round agriculture in Northern Ghana. As you have witnessed for yourselves, these so-called dams are excavated ponds or better still dugouts done to collect and hold-up rainwater.
However, as early as November/December, when the raining season had barely ended in the northern part of the country, majority of these excavated ponds began to dry up and had no water for the consumption of livestock, let alone farming activity.
We believe that it would have been more prudent and judicious use of the taxpayers’ money if government had channeled the huge resources wasted on these sub-standard and meaningless excavated ponds into proper small-scale irrigation dams like the ones being constructed by JICA in some parts of the country.
We have always maintained that 1V1D like similar other tokenism being championed by this Akufo-Addo government, constitutes a huge financial loss to the state. Since this government is determined to stay the course of wasting our scare resources on such counterproductive ventures, which in most cases only facilitate the plundering of our resources into private pockets, we wish to reiterate the point that a future government of the NDC shall investigate and prosecute all persons associated with such deceptive schemes.
To this end, we wish to sound a strong caution to the likes of Madam Hawa Koomson and others, that they stand as good candidates for prosecution for the offense of willfully causing financial loss to the state when power changes hands.
Ladies and gentlemen, there is no gainsaying the fact that this 1V1D scam is the greatest fraud ever to be perpetrated on the people of the north by any government in the history of Ghana. What is shows is that President Nana Addo Danquah Akufo-Addo and his Vice, Dr. Bawumia have no respect for the people of the north nor have their interest at heart. In their desperation for power, they deceived Ghanaians with sweet-sounding lofty promises which were intended solely for electoral gain and never meant to be kept.
Today, they have flattered to deceive on all their flagship promises and have been exposed for who they really are. And we know that the good of people of Ghana will hold them accountable for this grand 1V1D scam and their several unfulfilled promises come December 7th 2020.
We thank you for coming, and may God bless our homeland Ghana.
COMRADE SAMMY GYAMFI ESQ.
National Communication Officer, NDC
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