The combative National Communications Officer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Sammy Gyamfi, has accused the Vice President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia of using cooked figures for his analyses of the Ghanaian economy.
He said, he felt sad for Ghana after reading the entire speech which was delivered by the Vice President, because in his view, Dr Bawumia was insincere and failed to accept responsibility for the failings in the economy.
Speaking on the Key Points on TV3 hosted by Dzifa Bampoh, Mr Gyamfi, said “I couldn’t listen to the live address by the Vice President but I have taken time to read the 129 page speech he delivered. After I did so, I felt sad for this country because we have a vice president who is very insincere and deceitful.
“The Vice President, who is not willing to accept responsibility for his own economic mismanagement and the failings of this government. That 129 page speech is full of blatant falsehoods and a litany of excuses that do not hold water. The use of cooked figures and false statistical data to create an impression this government has done better when the true facts rather show that this country has had its economy deteriorated in the last five years.”
The National Communications Officer, also challenged an assertion by the Dean of Graduate Studies at the University of Professional Studies, Accra (UPSA), Professor Kwaku Mensah Mawutor, to the effect that the government has enhanced the economy.
Prof Mawutor, while speaking on the Key Points on TV3 last Saturday, April 9, 2022, endorsed the data put out by the Vice President in his address on the economy, saying the figures were verifiable, saying “the figures were there, they were verifiable undoubtedly, some of the figures that were churned out, I verified some of them from the various platforms.
“It tells you that indeed, if we are looking at the descriptive analysis, he did a very good work by describing the performance of the NPP, juxtaposing it with the NDC’s.
“It is also evident that undoubtedly, the current government has enhanced some of the economic performance indicators. To be frank with you, GDP even though in the midst of crisis, is improving. The first few years we all saw that improvement from 3.6 to almost more than 6 per cent GDP,” he said.
Reacting to him, Sammy Gyamfi, said “I couldn’t listen to the live address by the Vice President, but I have taken time to read the 129 page speech he delivered. After I did so, I felt sad for this country, because we have a vice president who is very insincere and deceitful.
He added “But just to respond quickly to what Prof Mawutor said about the figures Bawumia presented showing that they have done better relative to GDP.
“Prof, if you have an economy with three oil fields, you cannot be comparing GDP growth of such an economy to an economy that had only one oil field. President Kuffuor, had one oil field, Jubilee, which he bequeathed to the Mills/Mahama administration and that oil field was giving this country averagely 70,000 barrels of oil per day.
“Now, due to President Mahama’s investment in the hydro carbon sector, by the time we were leaving office in 2016, we had discovered and we were ready for commercial operationalization of two new oil fields, the TEN, Sankofa fields, which this government knows next to nothing about. It was as a result of that the World Bank, the IMF and Economist Intelligence Unit in 2016, predicted a growth rate of 8 per cent for Ghana in for 2017, they predicted in 2016 even before elections were held and these people came into office.
“Whereas we had just about 70,000 barrels of oil a day, they are now having over 200,000 barrels of oil per day. In terms of oil revenue, we had just about 6billion cedis in four years, in four years that have had over 20billion.”
Dr Bawumia in his address, said among other things that Ghana is directly affected by the ongoing geopolitical tension between Russia and Ukraine.
He explained that, Russia accounts for some 30 per cent of Ghana’s imported grains, 50 per cent of flour and 39 per cent of fertilizer.
The warfare therefore affected the local economy, he said.
“The increase in commodity prices has been exacerbated by the Russia-Ukraine conflict. Russia and Ukraine together account for 30 per cent of the global wheat export. The longer the conflict the greater will be the disruptions to global food supply. The country is also likely to slow global growth.
“According to the AfDB the price of wheat has shot up by 62 per cent since the war begun. The price of fertilizer is up by 300 per cent, the price of maize is up by 36 per cent since the war begin. Here in Ghana 60 per cent of our total imports of iron ore and steel are from Ukraine.
“Russia accounts for some 30 per cent of Ghana’s imported grains, 50 per cent of flour and 39 per cent of fertilizer. So we are directly affected by the Russia-Ukraine ware. Unfortunately, we do not know when it will be over. The global increase in fuel prices is causing hardship.”
Dr Bawumia said “To put the expenditure on these three items in perspective, it is important to juxtapose it against the total expenditure (releases) on some of the governments key flagship projects, including Free SHS, One District One Factory, Planting For Food and Jobs, Development Authorities, Ghanacard, Zongo Development Fund, NABCO, and teacher and nursing trainee allowances.
The data shows that the expenditure on these flagship programs over the five year period between 2017 and 2021 amounted to GHC15.62 billion compared to the GHC 50.1 billion expenditure on the three exceptional items.
“The expenditure on the three exceptional items amounted to more than three times the expenditure on the flagship programmes.”