President-elect Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo yesterday dropped the first name among persons he wants to appoint as ministers.
Even though Nana had hinted of the possibility of appointing Alan Kwadwo Kyerematen during his electioneering campaign tour of the country, he gave it a major boost when he met captains of trade and industry in the country.
At a forum with the leadership of the Private Enterprise Federation (PEF) in Accra to outline his government’s ‘strategy for the private sector,’ the president-elect underscored, “I came here with Alan Kyerematen because he is the man who is going to be the Minister of Trade and Industry in the Akufo-Addo government,” amidst spontaneous applause from the gathering.
An obviously elated Alan was seen beaming with smiles while acknowledging cheers and seeming congratulation from the former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) who was seated next to him on stage.
Nana Addo was therefore, confident that the NPP majority in parliament would clear Mr Alan Kyerematen (fondly called Alan K or Alan Cash -, former minister of trade and industry in the erstwhile Kufuor’s NPP administration – when he is veted. Nana vouched for Alan’s credibility saying, “You are going to be dealing with a very competent and knowledgeable public and political figure of the first rank who I’m confident is going to oversee the rapid industrialization of our country.”
But that was not without a note of caution to those who aspire to serve in his government. “I have said it and I will repeat again; those who are coming into this administration thinking that it’s an avenue for making a lot of money are going to be disappointed.” There was another spirited round of applause and cheers from the anxious audience.
“They better go to the private sector; that is where people have a lot of money,” he advised would-be ministers.
Addressing concerns expressed by some anxious industry players who fear that some government appointees might be competing with them for various interests, Nana Akufo-Addo assured, “Neither he” [referring to Alan Kyerematen] “nor any of the people who are going to be working with me are going to be your competitors,” noting with emphasis, “Ours is the public sector and yours is the private sector.”
In that regard, he insisted, “The former is to be a supporter, not a competitor with the private sector; and that is how it is going to be.”
Empowering Local Businesses
As a man who believes in empowering the local private sector, the president-elect promised to pass a legislation to require that at least 70% of all Government of Ghana taxpayer-financed contracts and procurements be executed by local corporate entities.
In addition he claimed, “We will introduce a policy requiring that 30% of the required 70% be sourced from entities owned by women, persons with disability, and those established under the Youth Enterprise Fund (YEF).
“Once in government, our priority is to do all we can to give you the confidence of a positive business environment devoid of arbitrary and irrational policy initiatives and one that gives you the confidence to do what you do best – invest in the numerous opportunities to create jobs and prosperity.”
He also pledged his government’s commitment to restore macroeconomic stability, shift the focus of economic management from taxation to production, manage the economy competently and make the machinery of government work to deliver the benefits of progress to Ghanaians.
Enhancing Fiscal Discipline
To address the problem of the current high public debt levels and the country’s high risk of debt distress, Akufo-Addo revealed, “Our government will adopt and implement rules to anchor fiscal policy implementation. For example, there will be specific targets for the reduction of government borrowing and debt.”
Apart from that, he said, “We intend to enact a Fiscal Responsibility Law (FRL) to bring comprehensiveness, accountability, transparency and stability to the entire budgetary process. Under this law, a Fiscal Council would be established to set up medium-term fiscal policy and monitor compliance.”
Taxation To Production
Nana Akufo-Addo expressed grave concern about the imposition of too many taxes on the citizenry and businesses which he noted, is choking the Ghanaian economy. He therefore gave the assurance, “The new administration will shift the focus of economic policy away from taxation to production by removing what Dr Bawumia famously terms the nuisance taxes.”
“The ensuing increase in production and economic growth arising from streamlining as well as the elimination and reduction of some of these taxes, will more than compensate for any temporary revenue shortfall.”
In sum, the incoming president underscored, “We will make Ghana work again.”
Nana Visits Upper East
Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo will today embark on a two-day ‘thank you’ tour of the Upper East Region.
He will among other activities, pay a courtesy call on traditional and religious leaders in the region and thank them for their support regarding his victory in the December 7 poll.
Speaking to Citi News in Bolgatanga, NPP Upper East Regional Youth Organizer, Ibrahim Bashiru, said Nana Akufo-Addo’s visit to the region is to re-assure chiefs and every traditional council of his resolve and commitment to fulfill all the campaign promises made by the NPP.
Bashiru added that Nana will on Thursday call on the Bawku Naba, Asigri Abogrago Azorka II and the paramount chief of Sandema, Nab Azagsuk Azantillow.
On Friday, 23rd December, the president-elect and his retinue will call on the paramount chief of the Talensi Traditional Area, Tong-Rana Kugbilsong Nalebegtang.
The Regional Organizer explained that Nana Addo will not be addressing party supporters and sympathizers since the tour is strictly directed at chiefs and some traditional councils.
Source: Daily Guide
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