NEWS COMMENTARY ON THE 2019 STATE OF THE NATION ADDRESS BY PRESIDENT AKUFO-ADDO
The commitment of President Akufo-Addo to the socio-economic development of the country has not been beyond doubt since he assumed office about two years ago. Programmes and projects such as Planting for Food and Jobs, One District One Factory, Free Senior High School and the Commodity Exchange platform, among others, are meant to transform the economy through increased output of goods and services as well as orientation towards export for increased revenue and thereby increase the welfare and standard of living of all Ghanaians. In spite of all this, there are still challenges facing the country. On the economic front, for example, there is the need to stabilise the cedi against the major foreign currencies and also to ensure a reasonably satisfactory management of reducing the cost of doing business in the country. It is within the context of these developments that the State of the Nation Address delivered to Ghanaians has focused on the foundations of a sound economy. There is no doubt that a strong economy is what the country needs for smooth socio-economic development aimed at improving the welfare of the people. This calls for sound and prudent measures aimed at ensuring that every effort is being made to improve upon the economic situation of the country. When this is done economic growth will trigger off successfully thereby improve efforts to make Ghanaians happy.
A related issue is the need to demystify science and technology. Without this, we may have to depend on foreigners to come in and utilize the resources for us and using them to produce end products that will be sent back and sold to us at high prices. Through the application of science and technology it will be possible for Ghanaians themselves to depend on their own efforts to build a strong economy that will cater for the interest of each and every person in the country. It is also good that projects like housing projects started under the Kufuor Administration as well as the Saglemi Housing Project also started under the NDC are to be revived and continued for completion to serve the needs of the people. This is welcome news because housing is a fundamental human need that cannot be glossed over no matter what. It is expected that these projects will be completed quickly to serve the purpose for which they were initiated. Again, in view of the need to get more people, especially the youth, in the work force any step needed to ensure the employment of people ought to be encouraged. The Ghana Business Support Programme which aims at providing support for young people to go into entrepreneurship and cease to be dependent on the formal sector for employment must be encouraged. Besides, it is heart-warming that MASLOC has been revamped with some financial resources. The good news here is that it will also encourage many people to be engaged and given support to run their own businesses. Also, projects such as the construction of landing sites and two fishing harbours among others are good but these ought to be strictly monitored to ensure that they are completed on time and also based on value for money. It is expected that come next year most of these projects, if not all, will be completed to serve the purpose for which they were embarked upon. It is our prayer that the vision and plans of the Akufo-Addo led administration will see full implementation to enhance the development of the country.
BY: DR. KOFI AMPONSAH-BEDIAKO- DIRECTOR OF CORPORATE COMMUNICATIONS, GHANA STANDARDS AUTHORITY.