BY BENJAMIN TANDOH
PRESIDENT NANA Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has described members of vigilante groups associated with the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP), who are fomenting trouble in parts of the country, as criminals and a disgrace to the party.
The President said this at his media encounter with journalists held at the Banquet Hall of the Flagstaff House yesterday.
Responding to a question on vigilantism and youth unrest from Eyram Bashan, group managing news editor of Excellence in Broadcasting (EIB), the President said, “I should not omit from this accounting [his interaction with the media] the disgraceful behaviour of some members of my party, the NPP, which has become known as vigilantism.
“I believe there’s no longer any argument that criminal behaviour wears no political colours and it is solely to be dealt with by the police.
“I pray that we’ve seen the last of it. We are continuously working to ensure that it does not recur, that we uphold the rule of law.”
Concerning data on job creation and unemployment, President Akufo-Addo gave the assurance that he would be able to give accurate data on how many jobs had been created in the next three months .
“We are barely one year in office and so we are in the process of putting the data together. I cannot provide those statistics readily, but I think in the next three months or so we should be able to provide those statistics,” the President told journalists.
On the economy, President Akufo-Addo said the performance of the Ghanaian economy in 2017 is a vindication of the decision taken to appoint 110 Ministers and Deputy Ministers of State.
Citing a quote from the speech of the Vice President, Alhaji Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, at Legon, at the opening of the New Year School, President Akufo-Addo stated: “The question that we should ask is how can you inherit a budget deficit of 9.3% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), proceed to reduce taxes, bring down inflation, bring down interest rates, increase economic growth (from 3.6% to 7.9%), increase your international reserves, maintain relative exchange rate stability, reduce the debt to GDP ratio and the rate of debt accumulation, pay almost half of arrears inherited, stay current on obligations to statutory funds, restore teacher and nursing training allowances, double the capitation grant, implement free senior high school education and yet still be able to reduce the fiscal deficit from 9.3% to an estimated 5.6% of GDP? Quite simple, this is a remarkable achievement and this is what we mean by competent economic management.”
“It is this competence coupled with integrity in the conduct of public transactions, ensuring value-for-money, protecting the public purse”, President Akufo-Addo added, “that are going to bring the dream of a happy and prosperous Ghana, a Ghana Beyond Aid, quickly within our grasp.”