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General News of Monday, 6 July 2020


Bawumia states number of times NPP ‘rescued’ Ghana

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The New Patriotic Party (NPP) as the ruling government hardly miss the opportunity to tout their achievements and social interventions for the country.

Led by Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the party has advocated for a second term for him with the promise of doing more to better the lives of citizens hence their latest term ‘4More for Nana’.

Following this, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo was on Saturday, 27 June, 2020 acclaimed as the presidential candidate of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) for the December 7, 2020 elections.

The acclamation was done at a special National Council meeting of the party which is in consonance with Article 13 (2) (1) of the NPP’s constitution that provides for an acclamation when there is a sole presidential candidate at the close of nominations.

Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia has been retained as his running mate for the fourth time.

Speaking after being selected as the preferred running mate, Dr. Bawumia recounted some of the achievements of the Akufo-Addo-led government.

According to him, the ruling NPP has than more for Ghanaians in the three and half years they have been in power.

Here are some of the achievement he recounted:

We have ended the sufferings associated with dumsor

In February 2020 during a State of the Nation Address, President Akufo-Addo announced his government has resolved the issue of eractic power supply the country suffered during the Mahama-led administration.

According to the president, every step needed to be taken including deals and agreement have been addressed to ensure that Ghanaians enjoy stable power supply.

Reduction of electricity tariff by 10.9 % compared to the cumulative increase of 264% under the NDC.

Dr. Bawumia made mention that in January 2018, President Akufo-Addo announced that as from January that year, non-residential users of electricity in the country would enjoy an average of 14% reduction in electricity tariffs.

“The non-residential tariff rate, which is the rate which includes all of you here, is being reduced by an average of 14%. For barbers, it is being reduced by 18%; for hairdressers and beauticians, 15.7%, and for tailors, 9.8%.”

“An average bill last year was GH¢562 a month. With this reduction from January, it is coming down to GH¢473 a month, which means GH¢88 has been taken from the electricity tariff that you pay. We want to encourage private business, and make business stand on its feet.” The president explained.

According to the Vice President, this was done to boost private businesses in the country.

We have further reduced tariff by 50% for the months of April, May, June this year.

As part of the effort to reduce economic burdens on Ghanaians following the outbreak of coronavirus, government in the month of April 2020, announced a 50% cut in electricity bills for commercial and residential consumers across the country.

The 50 percent of was for the period of April, May, June as government used March 2020 bill as a benchmark.

We have provided water to house in April, May, and June.
In the same month of April, government also absorbed the cost of water bill for Ghanaians for the months of April, May and June 2020 following the outbreak of coronavirus.

Petroleum prices have increased by half the rate in the public sector.

We have recruited over 550, 000 people.

We have abolished fees for post graduate medical training.

As part of the fulfillment of a promise made by President Akufo-Addo in 2016 to fully fund the postgraduate training of Ghanaian medical doctors, Dr Bawumia in May 2020 launched government's scholarship scheme for postgraduate training of Ghanaian medical doctors.

Under the scholarship scheme, the tuition fees of 918 residents and senior residents enrolled by the College of Physicians and Surgeons for the 2019/2020 academic year, will be fully paid for by government.

Increased the share of the district common fund to the disabled

Exempted Kayaye from market tolls.

We have ensured implementation of our promise to employ 50% of the persons who manage the country’s toll booth from amongst persons with disabilities.

We have restored the teachers training allowance, restored nursing training allowance
The previous National Democratic Congress (NDC) government scrapped the allowance in 2014, under which nursing trainees got at least GH¢450.00 every quarter.

But, during the 2016 electioneering period, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo promised to restore the allowance for the trainees to go through a smooth training to serve the nation.
In 2017, government announced effective September 1 of the same year each beneficiary trainee will receive GH¢400.00.
During the launch of the restoration of the allowance by the President in the then Brong Ahafo region, nurses could not hold back their joy when they received an alert of the allowance transaction as most of them interrupted the president’s address to jubilate.

Restored the book and researcher allowance.

We are paying professional allowances to teachers. 3 month salary arrears policy for teachers have been abolished.

We are absorbing the cost of BECE, WASCCE exams registration.

Government announced it would absorb the fees for students sitting the 2020 West African Senior School Certificate Examinations (WASSCE).

This was announced when the final year SHS and second year Gold Track students prepared to return to school following the closure of schools due to COVID-19.

The president indicated that 75.4 million cedis will be spent on the exercise.

We have sent 40 students from our Zongo and inner city communities on scholarship to Cuba to study medicine.

In November, 2019, Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia announced that 40 students from Ghana’s Zongo and Inner Cities have been selected to undergo further medical studies in Cuba.

This was part of government’s commitment to help boost the Human Resource capacity of less privileged communities.
20 females and 20 men were selected.

We have abolished 15 taxes including taxes on financial service, real estate, and airline and so on.

We have reduced import duties by 50 percent generally and 30% on cars

We have made it easier through digitization to apply for a passport, driver’s license, to obtain quick pension when you retire.

Purchase of electricity with the ECG app

Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, in February 2020, launched a mobile application designed to make the purchase of electricity credits and the payment of bills more convenient for customers of the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG).

Known as ‘ECG Power’, the app, designed in-house by the ICT staff of ECG, will make it possible for 2.8 million out of the company’s 3.8 million customers to make payments for power purchased and services rendered by the Company. This figure is expected to rise by the end of the year when old meters are replaced with smart ones.

Users of smartphones can download the app from the Google Play Store or Apple App Store, create an account, add the meter number, and top up or pay bills using mobile money wallets. Users of Non-smart phones, popularly known as ‘Yam’ phones are not left out; they can dial *226# and follow the prompts to enjoy the service.

Made it easier to apply for scholarships.

Beginning April 1, 2020, the online platform, www.scholarship.xn--com-to0a, according to government, will allow applicants to apply from the comfort of their homes, take an aptitude test and be interviewed in their own districts without coming to Accra.

The Vice President said the new system would ensure there was transparency in the scholarship awards and help reduce the risk of corruption in the scholarship application process.

We have made it easier to send money from people through mobile money interoperability.

Dr. Bawumia again brought to light the launch of the mobile money interoperability system by the Ghana Chamber of Telecommunications together with the Government of Ghana, Central Bank, GhIPSS and commercial banks on May 10, 2018.

The Mobile Money Payment Interoperability is the service, which allows direct and seamless transfer of funds from one mobile money wallet to another mobile money wallet across networks, which was developed by Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement Systems (GhIPSS) with active collaboration of the Mobile Industry.

After the second phase of the Financial Inclusion was completed in November 2018, it made Ghana one of the few countries in Africa to achieve the Universal Interoperability, ensuring connecting of bank accounts, MoMo wallet and ezwich, thereby allowing seamless flow of financial transactions.

We have made it easier to renew your NHIS membership, to register a business and we have reduced the corruption associated with obtaining services from the public service.

We have saved NHIS from collapse

The National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) has made substantial payments to service providers to reduce the outstanding claims due them.

In March, Ken Ofori-Atta announced in Parliament that the government had made available an amount of GHS300 million to the Authority as part of measures to provide liquidity to healthcare providers and the pharmaceutical industry to help fight the COVID-19 pandemic currently facing the country.

Subsequently, as at April 7, 2020, barely a week after the announcement, the NHIA has released GHS 207, 539, 276.62 Million so far to its credentialed service providers.

The on-going payments will move lower tier providers (CHPS, health centers and maternity homes) claims paid close to November 2019.

We are providing GH¢600 million to small scale businesses

About 200,000 businesses have been projected by the National Board for Small-Scale Industries (NBSSI) to benefit from the disbursement of the GH¢600 million soft loan scheme announced by the President for micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in view of the impact of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) on them.

Government of Ghana CAP Business Support Scheme (CAP BuSS) has received over 170,000 successful registrations on the online portal, with about 65 per cent of this number successfully completing applications after extended the deadline to 26 June 2020.

We have made seeds, fertilizers and extension services available to farmers whilst reducing inflation and reducing interest rate it half the depreciation of the cedi.

We have paid allowances to UN personnel increase from military and police 31 dollars to 35 dollars.

Free SHS was made possible with the economy management team.

The President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, on Tuesday, September 12, 2017, launched the Free Senior High School policy, describing the programme as the means to creating a society of opportunities and empowerment for every citizen.

President Akufo-Addo noted that he made the Free SHS pledge “because I know that knowledge and talent are not for the rich and privileged alone, and that free education widens the gates of opportunities to every child, especially those whose talents are arrested because of poverty.”

About 1.2 million children have benefited from the Free Senior High School (SHS) programme.
To support the increasing numbers of students under the programme, 8,000 teachers were deployed within the same period.

Cleaning of the banking sector

The Vice President brought back memories of how the Bank of Ghana (BoG) revoked the licenses of 9 universal banks, 347 microfinance companies, 39 microcredit companies, 15 savings and loans companies, eight finance house companies, and two non-bank institutions between 2017 and 2019.

This was part of government efforts to restore confidence in the banking and specialized deposit-taking sectors and to also resolve insolvent financial institutions whose continued existence posed risks to the interest of depositors.

According to Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta the cost of legacy debts and banking sector clean up amounted to GHc33billion.

Presenting the budget statement and financial policy of the government of Ghana for the year ending 31st December, 2020 in Parliament he maintained that gains so far made have been significa

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