Mahama�s Green Book Dazzles NPP

The opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) has been thrown into a state of confusion since the John Dramani Mahama administration unveiled its “Accounting to the People” publication chronologically cataloguing the countless development projects embarked upon by his government, the Republic Newspaper can report.

Sources have told this paper that the NPP is currently groping frantically for a new line of criticisms against the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) government since the publication popularly dubbed the Green Book has significantly neutralized the NPP’s narratives against the government.

President Mahama launched the publication at an event at the State Banquet Hall late last week, and since the launching, the Green Book has become an important topical issue in the media.

“ We note that ever since government began the publication and provision of irrefutable evidence of its achievements, the leadership and membership of the opposition party have changed their oft-repeated narrative of “non-performance” to one of “inflation of project cost”. In their misguided view, this desperate narrative will taint these projects and obscure the benefits that our people will derive from them,” Dr. Omane Boamah, stated in a press release on Monday.

The often repeated criticism of the NDC government by the NPP includes the fact that the NDC administration had secured billions in loans and grants more than any other administration but yet have been unable to show anything for it because the funds have been siphoned into private pockets.

This allegations is preposterous says the Communications Minister. “ Let me place on record that our performance in Government as summarized in the book, ‘Accounting to the people’ is unassailable and cannot be wished away. The unparalleled investments we have made in education, health, water, housing, roads, transport, and security among others have led to significant and measurable improvements in the living conditions of our people. We are aware that the NPP perceives these achievements as an existential threat hence their resort to outright falsehood as a means to detract from them. No amount of falsehood about government’s performance, however, will change the fact that the NPP’s record over the eight years they were in power pales into insignificance when set against what the NDC has done in office,” he said in the statement released on Monday.

Touting the achievements of his administration on Tuesday at the launching event at the State Banquet Hall, Mahama said the government has done a lot in all sectors to put Ghana on a sound footing. “Ghana is on the path of recovery and our medium-term prospects of becoming an upper middle-income country are brighter now than ever in the history of our country.”

“Development occurs within space and time, and so very often it’s not easy to comprehend that development is taking place because if you live in, say Chorkor, and there is a hospital being built in Nungua, you might not have the consciousness that healthcare is improving…, and so what I’ve tried to do with this book is to bring an overview of what we’ve been doing in the whole country over the period of our governance. Accounting to the people brings together in one space and volume, major highlights of what we have achieved so far as a government,” the President explained to dignitaries at the event.

The book is a combination of the numerous significant strides made in various sectors of in the country, adopting a combination of pictures matched with crisp and incisive text.

The book is presented in two parts. The first part gives a broad overview of this Government’s performance in various sectors based on the four pillars of the 2012 NDC manifesto. The second part provides pictorial proof of work done at the district level.

The green book shows that the NDC had been particularly active in the roads and transport sector, where it has significantly modernized the over 71,063 Km network criss-crossing the country. “One of the key planks of President Mahama’s transformation agenda is to expand and modernizes the road network. This is a prerequisite to open up the country in order to reduce road traffic accidents and congestion, boost economic activities and move goods and services freely. Unparalleled investments have been made in road projects across the country in the last few years,” the publication stated.

For instance, the government is spending GH¢3 billion in five years on what is known as the Cocoa Roads Improvement Programme (CRIP) which has commenced with the ongoing construction of several roads in cocoa-growing areas. Beyond the massive road construction in cocoa growing areas, other road projects funded from various sources are underway, the green book acknowledged.

On the transport sector, to provide the public with greater options and flexibility in road transport, public transportation is being improved through the acquisition of a total of 495 buses to strengthen the operations of two public transport companies, namely the Metro Mass Transit and the Intercity STC; and the implementation of the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project.

Some of these buses have been designed to allow for easy access by persons with disability. The first batch of 116 buses has already arrived and is to be deployed to provide intra-city transport services after the installation of electronic ticketing systems in the buses. Procurement processes are underway for the Bus Rapid Transit project. Ten of the buses for the BRT.

On the aviation sector, the Mahama administration has heavily invested in the development and upgrade of the country’s aviation infrastructure including airports, aerodromes and expansion of runways. The idea for the aviation sector is to allow Ghana to consolidate itself as the Aviation hub of Africa. Already these investments have attracted prospective investors in Dubai and Europe.

Statistics shows increasing volumes of passengers and cargo through the Kotoka International Airport. In 2014, over 40,000 flights were recorded at the airports. In the same period, total passenger throughput stood at over 2.5 million compared with a little over 1.3 million in 2009, representing nearly 100% increase.

To accommodate this increases in throughput serious expansion work has been undertaken at the arrival hall. Also, Preparatory work is underway for the construction of an ultramodern international terminal with a capacity of 5 million passengers a year, to be known as Terminal 3 at the Kotoka International Airport.

Meanwhile similar massive investments are being undertaken in the ICT sector, a sector known to have contributed greatly to Ghana’s economic growth over the years. Investments in the sector include the National Data Centre which will form an essential part of the e-Government infrastructure.

Designed to be the largest in West Africa, the Data Center will promote an integrated use of ICT to improve efficiency and transparency in governance and facilitate storage, management and dissemination of data for both public and private establishments. It will among others, provide web hosting and cloud infrastructure services. Fibre optic backbones are currently being laid across the country to facilitate the ICT drive of the government.