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WE’RE ALREADY FULFILLING PROMISES - President Akufo-Addo

Politics

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo says his 7 month old government is already fulfilling the promises made to the electorate in the run-up to the December 2016 elections, despite the economic mess inherited by his administration.

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo says his 7 month old government is already fulfilling the promises made to the electorate in the run-up to the December 2016 elections, despite the economic mess inherited by his administration.

 

The president said this yesterday when he addressed a durbar of the Chiefs and people at Bibiani, in the Bibiani Anhwiaso Bekwai at the commencement of his 3-day tour of the Western Region

 “When we came into office, we were met with huge debts and no money. It is for this reason that we put in place the appropriate measures to strengthen our monetary system, so the development we promised the people can be met,” he stated.

He noted that the Asempa budget read in Parliament by the Minister for Financ in March had ensured that the country’s finances had been placed on a solid footing, and were gaining strength to ensure the fulfilment of his government’s promises.

A flagship programme of his government, the Free SHS policy, President Akufo-Addo reiterated, would commence in September, stressing that, that had been made possible by the sound economic policies his government has put in place.

“I have been bastardised by several persons who claim the Free SHS policy is a misplaced priority, a lie, and cannot be done. The Free SHS policy, I wish to assure them, will start from September. The first students in the history of our country who are going to benefit from the Free SHS will be doing so as from September this year,” he said.

Touching on the dwindling fortunes of the cocoa sector, President Akufo-Addo noted that the policies and programmes instituted by former President John Agyekum Kufuor ensured that the cocoa production hit 1 million tonnes in 2010/2011.

However, cocoa production has since declined, with the 2015/2016 crop season recording a production of 778,000 metric tonnes.

“My government is going to increase cocoa production again to 1 million tonnes, and move it to 1.5 million tonnes in the course of my mandate. We will also ensure that cocoa farmers gain their pride of place in our society. We will make the cultivation of cocoa a source of gainful employment once again,” he said.

 The 1-District-1-Factory policy, President Akufo-Addo noted, would be rolled out in the course of this month, and the construction of the Western Railway lines will also begin shortly, with these two initiatives creating hundreds of thousands of jobs.

President Akufo-Addo also announced that the Minister for Local Government, Hajia Alima Mahama, would in September announce the upgrading of Sefwi Anhwiaso Bekwai from a district into a municipality.

On the creation of the proposed Western North Region, the President announced that a petition had been submitted to him demanding the creation of the new region. This petition, the President disclosed, was referred to the Council of State by letter dated 29 June, 2017.

To this end, a meeting of the President and the Council of State has been slated for the 15 August, where the President will obtain advice from the Council of State on whether there is a need to create the new region.

President Akufo-Addo added that upon receipt of supporting advice from the Council, he is mandated by the Constitution to appoint a Commission of Inquiry to investigate the need for the creation of the new region.

He explained further that should the Commission be convinced that such a need pertains, it will recommend the places and issues for a referendum. The matter will then be referred to the Electoral Commission for a referendum to be held according to the recommendations of the Commission.

“From what I have heard Ogyeahorhuor Yaw Gyebi II, the President of the Western Regional House of Chiefs, saying this morning, I am confident that the Western North region will soon be created, because he says you are voting 100% in the referendum for the creation of the new region.

For the first time in the history of the Fourth Republic, new regions will be created and it will be under the presidency of Nana Akufo-Addo that this is going to be done,” he said

President Akufo-Addo, therefore, appealed for the support of the people of Bibiani, adding that “support me fully, so I can work to fulfil the pledges I made to you. Let me reiterate that Ghana is not a poor country. We are a rich nation. With good policies, we are going to bring wealth and prosperity to every part of this country.”