… And government hits back

Samuel Okudzeto, Deputy Minister of Information (left), President Mills (right)

In swift reaction, the government has stated that the NPP’s statement was a desperate attempt to keep the party alive, taking into account that the two years achievement of President John Evans Atta Mills had overshadowed the eight years of the President Kufuor-led regime.

According to a deputy Minister of Information, Mr. Samuel Okudzeto-Ablakwa, since the release of the NDC’s Better Ghana Agenda book, fear and panic had gripped the leadership of the NPP, and that they had embarked upon baseless effusions.

“It is just baseless effusions coming from a desperate organisation because of what we have achieved within just two years. They are panicking, because the NDC government took some few months to bring down inflation to a single digit, which they could not do within their eight years reign,” he told this paper yesterday.

According to him, it was unbelievable that the NPP woefully failed to recognise the achievements of the government, saying that the NPP was full of inconsistencies.

He said, in one breadth the NPP was claiming credit for the achievements, while in another breadth, it was stating that the achievements were deceitful.

“There is no logic in their arguments. At one point, you claim that the achievements are yours, and in another vein, you said the achievements were full of deceit and lies. Which is which?” he asked.

The Deputy Minister, who was reacting to the NPP’s remarks, claimed the NDC had introduced free school uniforms, embarked on the distribution of free exercise books, managed to reduce the number of schools under trees, and increasing the school feeding programme among others.

According to him, the NDC had not taken any credit for whatever the NPP had done, and was quick to add, “We were honest and humble enough to admit that there are some projects that were initiated by the NPP. Some projects, for instance, were 17% completed by the NPP, and as we speak now, they are 47% complete. The mere propaganda by the NPP clearly demonstrates that they are panicking.”

On the President’s declaration of 2012 as an action year, he said it demonstrates that there are more plans from the President, after achieving so much within just two years of his reign. He said, “It clearly tells you that he has bigger plans that would take off next year. He has a vision which would be pursued vigorously next year. It is a fallacy to say that nothing was done in previous years because next year has been declared an action year.”

Mr. Ablakwa contended that another track record of the NDC achievement was the reduction of corruption in the country, and stated that corruption had drastically reduced, according to statistics, a record, he noted, had never happened in the annals of the nation’s history.

To him, the jute factory in Kumasi, the glass factory and other projects were on the radar of the government, hence the Presidents declaration of 2012 as a year of action.
Speaking on the Tema Oil Refinery (TOR) debt, Mr. Ablakwa said contrary to how the NPP diverted the TOR levy, the NDC government had rescued it, stating that TOR would have collapsed if the government had not gone to its aid.

Dismissing allegations that the taxpayers’ money was used in printing the top 50 achievements of the NDC, he said, “We have been very honest with the people of Ghana. President Mills would not use the taxpayers’ money anyhow, as was the case in the previous administration.”

Stressing further on the achievements, he said the NDC inherited an economy which was in an intensive care unit, but President Mills’ administration had now brought the economy back on track.

On whether intended projects should be labeled as achievements, Mr. Ablakwa was of the view that feasibility studies should not be taken for granted, adding that the fact that one has taken a bold decision to do a feasibility study, clearly demonstrated a will to do something in the supreme interest of the nation.

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