General News of Sunday, 16 February 2014
President John Mahama says rather than predicting doom for the country, “wise” Ghanaian Politicians should help him scale the current economic hurdles confronting the Nation.
“I thank and salute the wise Ghanaian politicians who understand that the right attitude in such times is to assist the government and stop predicting disasters,” Mr. Mahama wrote on his facebook page.
He argued that such support is important “because in a democratic country such as ours, the government is the people's government. It is your government”.
According to him, “a nation has to be united when facing any kind of political or economic challenges” because the Government of the day “…does everything necessary to lead our country and to attain the development goals it has announced”.
The local currency is currently nose-diving against the dollar and other major international currencies.
It has depreciated by about 7% since January 2014. The Central Bank of Ghana, besides announcing a tall list of measures to control the forex market and by so doing, strengthening the Cedi, has also injected US$20 million into critical sectors of the economy towards the same end.
Economic Watchers and critics have blamed Ghana’s huge appetite for imports for the problem. They argue that increasing production and exports could help the situation.
Ghana imports about US$600 million worth of rice every year. About US$400 million worth of sugar, frozen food, tomatoes, vegetable oil, amongst a whole raft of other food are imported into Ghana yearly.
President Mahama recently told the BBC that the Government is aiming at stopping the US$1 billion yearly food imports in the future as part of long term measures to shore up the Cedi against the dollar.