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19 September 2016

Amissah-Arthur has been ‘useful’ – Mahama

president-and-vice-presidentMr Kwesi Amissah-Arthur’s “calm disposition and sharp insights have been very useful to me in executing my mandate as president”, Mr John Mahama has said.

Launching the governing National Democratic Congress’ 2016 manifesto in Sunyani in the Brong Ahafo Region on Saturday, 17 September, the president said: “I wish to express my appreciation to my friend and compatriot who is also my running mate and vice president for the support he has given me during this period of our presidency.”

Mr Amissah-Arthur has on several occasions acted as president anytime the president was out of the jurisdiction of the country. He also heads the economic management team of the government.

The former Governor of the Bank of Ghana was also at the campaign launch and used the opportunity to respond to some assertions made about the economy by his opposite number, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia of the main opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP). In his speech, Mr Amissah-Arthur said every line in Dr Bawumia’s recent lecture on the economy contained a lie.

The vice-presidential nominee of the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) said at his lecture on the theme: ‘State of Ghana’s Economy – Foundation of Concrete or Straw?’ chaired by former President John Kufuor that the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC) had since 2009 amassed and spent 12 times the nominal resources that the NPP had over its eight years of leadership.

The former Deputy Governor of the Bank of Ghana said from 2001-2009, the total tax revenue collected under the Kufuor administration was GHS15.2 billion, but between 2009 and 2015, the Mills-Mahama administration has collected GHS90 billion in taxes.

According to him, it was estimated that by the end of 2016, the government would have collected a total of GHS118.2billion.

“Under the eight years of the NPP government, from 2001-2009, taxes and loans amounted to GHS20 billion and without oil, economic growth increased from 3.7 per cent to 9.1 per cent,” he said at the lecture.

“But in contrast, GDP per capita has declined by 12 per cent under John Mahama’s tenure as president when oil revenue and loans alone over the eight-year period of 2009-2016 would amount to GHS248billion.”

However, speaking at the manifesto launch of the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC) in Sunyani in the Brong Ahafo Region on Saturday, 17 September, Mr Amissah-Arthur said: “Dr B, Opana’s younger brother…doesn’t know that GHS25,000 today cannot buy that house he bought for GHS25,000 fifteen years ago, so he comes back and tells us that today’s cedi is equal to the cedi ten years ago, eight years ago, and so he will compare them in nominal terms.

“All of us who have studied economics, we know that nominal and real are different things: that one cedi today will buy less than one cedi bought ten years ago. So you can’t say one cedi then is equivalent to one cedi today. So, through this spurious analysis, he comes back to say in the eight years of Kufuor’s rule there was a 459 per cent increase in Ghana’s GDP. How?

“If even the economy improves by eight per cent a year, you’ll only double that GDP in nine years. How is it possible that the economy that is not growing at eight per cent, at three percent, four percent and so on, in eight years Some Dr is saying grew by almost 500 per cent? It is not possible; he is using figures to deceive us.

But when I said I was going to respond, one of my former colleagues in [University of Ghana] Legon called me and said: ‘The man is doing politics; he is not doing economics so don’t answer him with economics. Go on the political rally and tell him.’ So, I’ve decided that everywhere we go, I’ll take one of his lies and explain to you why they are lies.

“So don’t believe what you read. …I only got my copy of the thing he read three days ago. When I read it, every line there are lies there; I can destroy that lie.”

 

Source: classfmonline.com

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