Connect with us

News

Clueless Akufo-Addo and Bawumia punishing Ghanaians with their incompetence – Sammy Gyamfi

Published

on

Clueless Akufo-Addo and Bawumia punishing Ghanaians

Clueless Akufo-Addo and Bawumia punishing Ghanaians with their incompetence – Sammy Gyamfi

Clueless Akufo-Addo and Bawumia punishing Ghanaians: The opposition National Democratic Congress, NDC, has stated in a press statement that the governing New Patriotic Party, NPP, is punishing Ghanaians due to their bad management of the economy.

Speaking at their headquarters in Accra on Wednesday, January 5, 2022, the NDC’s National Communications Officer, Sammy Gyamfi, said they are, “utterly appalled by the decision of the insensitive Akufo-Addo/Bawumia government to reverse benchmark value discounts on selected imported goods, effective January 4, 2022.”

He expressed fear that the government’s decision to reverse benchmark revenue discounts will compel traders to pass on the cost to already suffering Ghanaians.

Sammy Gyamfi emphasized that the move will increase prices of goods and services, and worsen “the severe hardships Ghanaians are already reeling under.”

“This will ultimately increase the cost of doing business in the country, negatively affect the turnover of businesses and the volume of trade in the country, and lead to the collapse of many businesses and jobs.”

Read the details of the statement read at the press conference:

1. It will be recalled that sometime in April 2019, the government through Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia announced a 30% and 50% discount on the benchmark values of imported vehicles and general goods respectively. Sadly but unsurprisingly, the government has decided to scrap these discounts on 44 categories of imported goods.

2. This terrible decision comes at a time when the national currency is depreciating and world commodity prices are increasing at an alarming rate, with freight charges and port handling charges being extremely high. More importantly, the callous decision by this government to reverse benchmark value discounts comes at a time Ghanaian businesses, startups, parents, and households are reeling under a yoke of excessive taxation, persistent increases in fuel prices, and high cost of living never before witnessed in the annals of our country.

3. Ladies and gentlemen, what the decision to reverse benchmark value discounts effectively means is that prices of the affected items such as; vehicles and spare parts, machinery, equipment and plants, aluminum finished products (roofing sheets), portland cement, cement paper bags, and clinker, poultry, animal products (meat), fish, rice, sugar, pasta, spaghetti, noodles and macaroni, pharmaceuticals (including drugs such as paracetamol, condoms, etc.), toilet paper, facial tissue and towel, chocolate, toffees and chewing gum, palm oil (crude and refined oils), mosquito coils, ceramic tiles, tile cement, machetes, plastics, textile and textile articles, fruit juices, tomato paste and ketchup, furniture and parts, boxes of paper and paperboard cases of corrugated paper, iron steel bars, toilet soap and laundry bar soap, detergents washing powder, lubricating oil, soft drinks and carbonated drinks, biscuits/wafers, among others; will all go up by 30%- 50% in the coming days.

4. These increases which will eventually be passed on to Ghanaians will further escalate prices of general goods and services in the country and exacerbate the severe hardships Ghanaians are already reeling under. This will ultimately increase the cost of doing business in the country, negatively affect the turnover of businesses and the volume of trade in the country, and lead to the collapse of many businesses and jobs.

5. In fact, the bitter reality is that, given the many draconian taxes that have been introduced by the callous Akufo-Addo/Bawumia/NPP government since April 2019 and the continuous depreciation of the Ghana Cedi which is already eroding profit margins and the capital of businesses, importers and Ghanaians, in general, will be worse off as a result of this decision. In short, import duties will be far higher than they were before April 2019 when the benchmark value discounts were introduced, in view of the continuous free fall of the Cedi and the raft of new crippling tax measures that the government has introduced since April 2019.

6. Ladies and gentlemen, we wish to make the point, that this catastrophic decision has been occasioned by the self-inflicted economic malaise we presently find ourselves in, with our economy in tatters and government simply unable to find money to do anything. After five (5) years of economic mismanagement and reckless election-driven spending, which have taken the country back to its HIPC days, the Akufo-Addo/Bawumia/NPP government has decided to punish the already-burdened Ghanaian people with more hardships for their own recklessness and mismanagement. This is why all manner of crippling taxes and killer revenue measures such as the reversal of benchmark value discounts are now being imposed on Ghanaians to shore up government revenue just to create an artificial picture of a sound economy in order to convince the investor community on more and more borrowing.

7. We in the NDC are left in no doubt whatsoever that this latest decision by the Government to reverse discounts on benchmark values of imported goods, further accentuates Dr. Bawumia’s place as the most deceitful Politician in Ghana’s history. It will be recalled that sometime in the year 2019, Dr. Bawumia was all over the place pontificating that Ghana’s Ports were one of the most expensive in the sub-region and that government had decided to introduce discounted benchmark values in order to facilitate more trade volumes, make our ports more competitive, reduce smuggling and increase government revenues from the Ports.

8. Friends, the question that ought to be asked is, what has changed in just two years to warrant a reversal of that so-called “brilliant economic policy” which was introduced by the once economic messiah of the NPP who has now turned himself into an IT champion? What happened to all the justifications Dr. Bawumia mounted for the introduction of the discounted benchmark values? Is government no longer interested in facilitating more trade volumes and making our Ports competitive? Is government no longer interested in reducing smuggling and increasing national revenue through benchmark value discounts?

9. Furthermore, the reversal of benchmark value discounts on selected imported goods reinforces our long-held view that this Akufo-Addo/Bawumia/NPP government is an insensitive and callous administration which does not have the wellbeing of the Ghanaian people at heart. These are the very people who promised among other things to move this country from taxation to production, but have yet again pulled another deception on Ghanaians relative to import duty and Port charges. Never has a government been this cunning and untruthful to the people in our history as a country.

10. As always, it would come as no surprise to us for government’s apologists led by Dr. Bawumia himself to once again canvass the COVID-19 pandemic as a convenient excuse for the decision to reverse benchmark value discounts. These days, the inept and clueless Akufo-Addo/Bawumia/NPP government blames literally every single thing on COVID-19, including when the sun fails to appear. However, it is important to state forcefully that COVID-19 can never be blamed for the reversal of benchmark values. The government exceeded its revenue target for the year 2020 (COVID year) and actually raked in more revenue than they did before COVID struck. For instance, in the year 2019 before the advent of COVID-19, total tax revenue stood at just about GHS43 billion, while total tax revenue for 2020 (covid-year) stood at GHS45.3 billion, thereby exceeding the government’s tax revenue target for 2020 by a whopping GHS2.5 billion. Also, whereas the government projected total tax revenue of GHS55 billion for the 2021 fiscal year, our checks show that this revenue target has been exceeded.

11. In addition to this, and by courtesy of the coronavirus pandemic, the government has received support of about US$2 billion from the IMF, a US$100 million grant from the World Bank, US$250 million from the Stabilization Fund, about GHS20 billion support from the Central Bank, among others, all of which have been squandered on hyper-inflated consumption-related expenditures.

12. Ladies and gentlemen, it is worthy of note that, several countries in the sub-region such as Togo, Benin, Nigeria, Ivory Coast, among others, have better budget deficit, debt to GDP ratio and other economic indices than Ghana despite being hit by the COVID pandemic. None of these countries have slapped their citizenry with the kind of draconian revenue measures the Ghanaian people are witnessing at the hands of the insensitive Akufo-Addo/Bawumia government. Therefore, COVID-19 can neither be a reasonable justification for the reversal of benchmark discounts on imported products nor the imposition of unprecedented hardships and misery on Ghanaians by this government. On the contrary, it is down to crass economic mismanagement spurred by a toxic combination of unbridled borrowing and reckless spending on misplaced priorities that have brought us here. That is what has created the unprecedented high budget deficit and unsustainable debt hole we presently find ourselves in.

13. Again, we must register our displeasure at the misplaced priorities of this government and the continuous waste of the public purse on the opulent lifestyle of the President and his government of family and friends in this time of economic difficulties. It is important to emphasize that, revenue has never been a problem for the Akufo-Addo/Bawumia/NPP government. Without any argument, this government has been the luckiest and most resourced government in Ghana’s history, with a total resource envelope of over GHS460 billion accruing to them in the last five years. It is a fact that this government has had more taxes than any other government in Ghana’s history (GHS157 billion in four years (2017-2020) as compared to GHS86 billion that accrued to the NDC/Mahama administration in four years- 2013-2016); more oil revenue and more borrowed funds than any government in Ghana’s history.

14. Yet, the chunk of all these unprecedented revenues is spent on consumption-related expenditures such as the rental of hyper-expensive luxurious jets to satisfy the comfort of President Akufo-Addo, while the rest of the meager resources of state are misappropriated through corruption and naked thievery by his appointees and family & friends, as was recently noted by the Catholic Bishops Conference. For instance, the 2020 Auditor General report shows that Ghana lost over GHS32 billion as a result of corruption and financial irregularities in the public sector from 2017-20202. President Akufo-Addo continues to display such insensitivity in this time of economic difficulties and same continues to be emulated by his appointees.

15. Friends from the media, the claim by the government that the purpose of the reversal of benchmark value discounts is to address concerns raised by the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI) and promote local production, is mischievous and ridiculous to say the say least. This is because some of the items listed under the 44 categories of imported goods affected by this draconian policy, such as vehicles, spare parts, Plants, Equipment, machinery, sugar, some drugs (pharmaceuticals) are not manufactured in Ghana, while some of the affected items such as Clinker, cement paper, paper etc. are input materials for local production. Even for the few affected products that are produced locally, we do not currently have the local capacity to produce to meet national demand. Hence, any policy that seeks to increase import duties and ultimately the prices of goods, will lead to more hardships in the country. The sensible thing for the government to do under the circumstances if they are genuinely minded to support AGI and boost local production is to reduce the cost of doing business and the factors of production by stabilizing the Ghana cedi, reducing the tax burden on businesses, and by ensuring that businesses have access to cheaper credit, low utility tariffs, and subsidized inputs. This is the surest and sustainable way of boosting local production without necessarily increasing the level of hardships in the country.

16. In conclusion, we wish to make the point, that Ghanaians have had enough of the deception and callousness of the Akufo-Addo/Bawumia/NPP government. The NDC holds the view, that this is not the time for more taxes and draconian revenue measures such as the reversal of benchmark value discounts. We share in the view espoused by GUTA that the GRA withdraws the statement announcing this measure which will only go a long way to stifle the already burdened businesses in the country.

We contend that this is the time for the judicious and efficient use of taxes collected, and the meager resources of the state for the benefit of the Ghanaian people. Enough of the wastage and ostentation being displayed by President Akufo-Addo and his government, only to turn around and impose hardship on the Ghanaian people through killer measures such as these.

17. It is about time we came together as a people irrespective of our social backgrounds or political affiliations to resist these draconian measures of the failed Akufo-Addo/Bawumia/NPP government which will only worsen our living conditions should they be allowed to stand.

Enough is Enough!

Do you have any news to share with us? WhatsApp us via +233558210224.
Or email us via [email protected].

News

Akufo-Addo is no longer my friend – Boakye Agyarko

Published

on

Akufo-Addo is no longer my friend

Akufo-Addo is no longer my friend – Boakye Agyarko

Most people in the government have already shown their dishonesty to the president and already called themselves out of the game plan. Hon. Agyarko Boakye was a great member of Parliament who was appointed at the early ruling stage of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.

Before you start reading this article, press on the top right corner of the page to follow to get updated on each new and trending story across the globe.

In an interview, Boakye Agyarko has revealed he does not talk to the President anymore. According to him, he trusted the president but he betrayed him.

He declared Nana used to be one of his best pals in Ghana but right now they are no more friends, He emphatically illustrated that even when it comes to marriage, people can marry for about 30 years and still go in for divorce.

He stated emphatically that the last time he spoke with the president was over a year ago and since then he has not spoken with the President again.

Do you have any news to share with us? WhatsApp us via +233558210224.
Or email us via [email protected].

Continue Reading

News

These plants have power to ward off evil spirits from home

Published

on

Oregano - plants have power

These plants have power to ward off evil spirits from home

Human environments are surrounded by different kinds of spirits that most of us can’t see with our eyes. But nature has its own way of protecting these environments with plants and other creatures that only those with spiritual divinity can foretell.

The Holy Bible even emphasizes that plants have spiritual powers that can redeem mankind from different problems in life. Plants as science have made us understand manufacture their own food for energy by making use of sunlight, water, and carbon dioxide from mankind and bear food and oxygen for humans survival.

This scientific process, therefore, explains the power that lives within plants that can even ward off evil spirits from our environment.

But not all plants have this ability. The following five plants have been well interpreted by people with spiritual divinity to have the potency in driving away bad spirits;

 

1. Saint George’s sword plant

 Saint George's Sword

IMAGE SOURCE: Google Unclassified Images

This plant has so many spiritual potencies. In Nigerian culture, it is believed that Saint George’s Sword Plant is used in rituals to remove evil eyes. Even apart from this spiritual benefit, the plant also has the potency of filtering the indoor air, removing 4 out of the 5 main toxins involved in the effects of sick building syndrome (Wikipedia). To use this potted plant to ward off bad spirits, it is ideal to place it outside your front door.

 

2. Peace Lily plant

Peace Lily plant

IMAGE SOURCE: Etsy.com

This tiny potted plant has a unique way of confirming an attack from a bad spirit in the environment. If the plant wilts on its own without any sign of bad care, there are bad energies (spirits) that sucked all of its energy. This plant can be placed in bathrooms in a small vase.

3. Guinea plant

freycinetia new guinea

IMAGE SOURCE: Wikimedia

This powerful plant has the potency in driving out bad obsessive spirits that torment people to death.

 

4. Rue plant (Herb-Of-Grace)

Rue It’s no surprise that this plant is also called herb-of-grace. It serves as one of those plants that guard mankind against spirits of hatred, whether from live humans or spirits who have passed on.

In the Holy Bible, Rue is once quoted in Luke 11:42: “But woe unto you, Pharisees! For ye tithe mint and rue and all manner of herbs”.

This powerful plant is a must-have in all households.

5. Oregano Plant

Oregano

IMAGE SOURCE: Mountain Crest Plant

Oregano Plant is a low-maintenance herb that may be kept both indoors and outdoors. The plant is ideal for growing in drought-prone places because it is native to hot, arid climates.

Evil spirits hate this planet and will never come close to it, no matter where they are planted. Place it on your porch or in a living room nook.

Do you have any news to share with us? WhatsApp us via +233558210224.
Or email us via [email protected].

Continue Reading

Education

Tertiary students in Ghana can now apply for student loans with ONLY Ghana Card- as Bawumia launches “No Guarantor Student Loan Policy”

Published

on

no guarantor student loan policy

Tertiary students in Ghana can now apply for student loans with ONLY Ghana Card- as Bawumia launches “No Guarantor Student Loan Policy”

The Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia has launched the No Guarantor Student Loan Policy at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) in Kumasi, on Wednesday, June 8, 2022.

The No Guarantor Student Loan Policy, a promise by the Akufo-Addo government prior to the 2020 elections, is to make tertiary education accessible to Ghanaian youth, especially graduates from the highly subscribed Free Senior High School policy.

With the No Guarantor Student Loan Policy, the cumbersome and restrictive policy of students providing three SSNIT contributors as guarantors before they could access student loans for tertiary education has been abolished. The No Guarantor Student Loan Policy Dr. Bawumia explained, makes it possible for qualified young Ghanaians to access loans to fund their tertiary education, using their Ghana Card.

REMOVAL OF BARRIERS TO EDUCATION

Speaking at the launch, Vice President Bawumia said, the coming into fruition of the pro-poor policy, will remove barriers and significantly increase inclusive access to tertiary education.

“The removal of the guarantor requirement is a critical first step to ensuring cost is not a barrier to access and participation in tertiary education,” Dr. Bawumia said.

“Indeed, these are exciting times to be a youth in Ghana. One can go through education from basic to tertiary with guaranteed support from Government.”

The Vice President noted that globally, loans have enabled financially challenged individuals to go through Universities and pay after graduation and the government of President Akufo-Addo recognised this need, and the challenges associated with students getting guarantors to secure loans, hence the introduction of the No Gurantor Policy to ease the burden of parents of qualified Free SHS graduates.

Expressing his delight over the launch of the policy and how it will help the poor, Dr. Bawumia gave startling statistics of how many students are unable to access guarantor-required student loans, thus, possibly being denied access to tertiary education.

“Evidence shows that the guarantor requirement poses a barrier to access. Out of the 325,000 eligible students whose details were submitted by all the tertiary institutions on the Student Loans portfolio, only 9.6% could access the loan in the 2019/20 academic year,’ Dr. Bawumia revealed.

“Similarly, only 8.4% of eligible students could access loans in 2016/2017, 9.8% in 2017/18, and 8.6% in 2015/16. Further, in the 2019/20 academic year, 42% of the 7,552 loan applicants could not submit their completed forms because of difficulty finding eligible guarantors,” he added.

“We promised to remove the guarantor requirement as a condition for loan access in the 2020 manifesto of the NPP. In fulfillment of this promise, the Government has revised the policy; hence, tertiary students will not have to present a Guarantor in order to access student loans. Effective this school year, all eligible tertiary students will have to submit their Ghana Card to access the loans,” Dr. Bawumia said.

Dr. Bawumia also expressed delight that the No Guarantor Student Loan Policy has been made possible through the Ghanacard thanks to the investment the government has made in digital infrastructure, which has made the Ghanacard a reliable national identity card for Ghanaians.

“This is one of the benefits we derive as a country by prioritizing digitalization. It is at the core of every serious economic management.”

Various Speakers at the ceremony, including the Vice-Chancellor of KNUST Prof. Rita Akosua Dickson, and the  President of NUGS, Dennis Appiah Larbi,  expressed gratitude to the government of President Akufo-Addo for the policy.

All the speakers agree the policy will open doors for more brilliant but needy students to access tertiary education which they usually miss out due to lack of funding.

Also present at the ceremony was the Minister of Education, Dr. Yaw Osei Adutwum, who expressed his Ministry’s commitment to ensuring the success of the policy.

The No Guarantor Student Loan Policy is another milestone in education after expanding access to secondary education through the Free SHS policy.

Qualified students are required to apply online to the Ghana Students Loan Trust with their Ghanacard and successful students will have their fees paid directly to their tertiary institutions.

Do you have any news to share with us? WhatsApp us via +233558210224.
Or email us via [email protected].

Continue Reading

Trending

%d bloggers like this: