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General News of Thursday, 27 March 2014

Source: Ajayi Oluwapelumi

Leaders too lazy to implement change driven policy - Economist

President Mahama’s administration need to consider implementing policies that will enable it privatise junior and senior high education and health sector, which will not only relief it of wage bill burden, but as well make the health and education sector perform at their peak.

This assertion was made by Sydney Casely-Hayford, an economist at a public lecture organised by Today Newspaper, at Coconut Groove Hotel.

The lecture which was themed: “The Public Wage Bill, Labour Agitation and The Falling Cedi… is Ghana’s Economy on The Bringe of Collapse?”.

Both the Minister of Finance, Seth Terkper, Mr. Graham Smith, Executive Secretary, Fair Wages and Salaries Commission who were invited, failed to show up at the event.

In an address, Mr. Casely-Hayford told his audience that the myriad challenges bedeviling the Ghanaian economy is not expenditure, but the lack of revenue generation ideas.

On that score, he proposed the immediate adoption of measures which would help in reducing the current wage bill of government.

Speaking on the need for government to privatise health and education, he added: “Government has many district hospitals, but they don’t need to run them. There are many private hospitals that are thriving. If you look into the economy today, the places where private sector is doing really well is health and education; that’s why everyone is trying to get their child into private schools.”

“Unfortunately, while private sectors are thriving in these sectors, government runs health and education sector are performing abysmally, while government is paying the bill for the poor performance. My proposal is that government should be bold enough to privatise public schools; that will automatically relief the burden of having to pay salaries, but rather receiving tax and VAT on school materials.”

He added that though Ghana competes with top world countries because of it natural resources, yet, it’s still not investors haven because “share market size is what drives the economy and we are too small compared to Nigeria, South Africa and the rest.

“That’s why we need to remove our old cap of thinking by focusing on increasing our export earnings and starts running our economy from a global perspective, instead of clamping down on dollar and other currency of exchange,” he said.

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