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General News of Monday, 28 August 2017


Don’t derail NPP reign, misconduct won’t be allowed – President warns appointees

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has warned his appointees that he will not allow any of them to derail the continued stay of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) in government through misconduct.

He pointed out that the continued stay of the NPP in power depended on the conduct of the appointees.

“Our conduct is what will determine the success of our government, jointly and severally. If we conduct ourselves well, if we respect the wishes and aspirations of the Ghanaian people who brought us here today and comport ourselves with dignity and humility as people who have come to provide service for our nation, that is the foundation that will allow us to build on victory upon victory for the future of our country,” he indicated.

Delivering an address at the annual national delegates conference of the NPP in Cape Coast last Saturday, President Akufo-Addo said members of the NPP were the heirs of the noblest tradition in Ghanaian politics, saying the tradition of freedom, progress and development in freedom was a precious asset and stressed the need for the members to remain faithful to that tradition.

‘You can’t rock our boat’

“It means, therefore, that anybody who wants to rock that boat and capsize it will not be tolerated. For the time being, I am the captain of the boat and I am not going to allow anybody to capsize our boat. Too much sweat and sacrifice has gone into bringing us where we are today,” he stressed.

The President said it was for that reason that no effort ought to be spared in prosecuting the agenda that brought the NPP into power.

“So we are on course. We are not going to be able to, in the first eight months, deliver everything that we promised, but the people of Ghana know that. But we know that, from the way we have started, if all of us are united and solid in what we are doing, by the time the four years is up, they will say, ‘Indeed, these are the men who came and rescued our country and they have succeeded in doing so.’ We are steadily on course,” he added.

He said within the short period that the government had been in power, there were many achievements that it could point to and that all the economic indices were going in the right direction.

“The sense of confidence of our people in the future of the economy is returning. The sense of confidence of investors in the future of Ghana’s economy is returning and the projects that will make that happen are multiplying by the day,” he said.

President Akufo-Addo, therefore, admonished members of the government to endeavour to stay on course, saying: “Let us support the economic programmes of this government. Let us support the measures that this government is taking to consolidate our economy, deal with our deficits and present an economy that is attractive to investors, domestic and foreign.”

He expressed optimism that “very soon that transformation that all of us are working and longing for will happen and it will be a transformation that will impact on every one of us”.

The President said it was important for the growth of the country’s democracy for the people to have confidence in their political leaders and that they would see people who came and promised that if they were given the power, they would do a set of programmes and when they got the power, they did it.

Keeping promises

“A situation whereby promises are made but not kept undermines our prospects for an orderly, stable and democratic governance in our country. That is why it is important that we begin to fulfil the promises we made to Ghanaians,” he said.

Regarding allegations of corruption in his government, he reassured Ghanaians that “every allegation about corruption against any official or member of my government will be investigated by the law enforcement agencies”.

He added that those who made allegations against government officials should be prepared to support them because nobody was going to get away with making allegations without providing proof.

“I am not going to preside over a government that will knowingly support corruption in the country,” he said, adding: “If I do not know about it, I cannot do anything about it”.

To deal with corruption in a non-partisan, objective and impartial manner, he said, the Office of the Special Prosecutor was in the offing, saying there would be a lot of parliamentary moves to try and delay its coming into being by those who were interested in delaying it.

He was emphatic that notwithstanding those efforts, “it will come”, and that it would be manned by people who were capable of doing justice to the office and who were committed to the fight against corruption in the country.

He recounted that following the party’s victory and the formation of his government, many people migrated from party positions into offices in the state and said there were many others who had wished to do same but felt disappointed that they could not do so.

The President explained that it was not possible, at any one time, for all to have jobs in the state machinery, adding that there were not enough jobs in the state machinery to accommodate everyone.

“But if we stay in office long enough, everybody will have a chance. We came not to create jobs in the state but in the private sector. That is our mantra, our creed.
We will leave the creation of jobs in the state sector to the socialists who want everything to be dominated by the state. Our vision for Ghana is about a thriving economy built on the enterprise, energy and initiatives of the Ghanaian private sector,” he posited.

The tradition of the NPP

Touching on the theme of the conference: “Delivering on our promises: Our roots, our strengths, our future”, the President said the roots of the NPP were the longest, noblest and most enduring in Ghana’s history.

He said that was why it was particularly apt that in the 70th year of the foundation of the movement that initiated the battle for the freedom and independence of Ghana, the party should gather in the Central Region, barely 20 miles from Saltpond where the formation of the UGCC took place.

According to him, the strengths of the party were its visions and values and those were the rock on which the party stood.

At the height of the Cold War, he recounted, the forebears of the party, who believed in the rule of law, respect for human rights, individual liberties and the principles of democratic accountability were painted as reactionary and working against the interest of Ghana because they did not want dictatorship to thrive.

“Today, those principles are the universal principles that are animating human progress and the development of mankind. So we have everything to be proud about the values and vision that have animated our party up to date. We will hold on to that vision and those values,” he stressed.

President Akufo-Addo was appreciative of the people of the Central Region for their role in the electoral victory of the NPP at last December’s polls.

“Every part of Ghana responded to our call and plea for the opportunity to come into office, but nowhere was that call or plea heeded to strongly than in the Central Region. We went from seven seats to 19 out of 23 and your presidential candidate had a clear majority. The Central Region was our flagship region in the elections. We appreciate the work that the region did for us,” he added.

“There were many who said we could not win and that Akufo-Addo could not lead us to victory, that our party was so divided it could not wage a successful campaign. But by your hard work and sacrifice and by the grace of the Almighty, we are here today as the ruling party. We will continue to say the battle is the Lord’s,” the President stressed.