A month to end the power crisis as Ghanaians were promised, President John Dramani Mahama appears to have shifted the goal post saying the crisis (dumsor) would end before the 2016 general elections.
The president gave the extended time when he was speaking in Tamale on Saturday, indicating that it could not be a campaign massage for the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP).
“Dumsor will end before 2016 elections,” Mr Mahama told the gathering.
He had earlier assured Ghanaians that December 2015 would be the last time to see dumsor and that all the measures he was putting in place would fix and not managing it.
However, his latest pronouncement gives credence to political pundits’ assertion that he was delaying solution to the crisis for electoral gains.
President Mahama chastised the NPP Members of Parliament (MPs) for their behaviour after the Minister of Finance, Seth Terkper, had presented the 2016 budget statement last Friday.
He said the show of the dead goat inscriptions on the cards by the MPs clearly indicated that they were not listening to the finance minister but rather waiting to show the cards to the Ghanaian public.
Addressing party supporters in Tamale during his two-day ‘changing lives’ and ‘Transforming Ghana’ tour of the Northern Region, President Mahama said the opposition MPs had already made up their minds about the budget before the finance minister came to read the statement in parliament.
According to President Mahama, there is evidence of what the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) borrowed and that Government spent more than GH¢1.5 million on health by building CHIPs compounds and upgrading of various hospitals. They also built 200 community base schools and providing potable drinking water which stands as 76 percent.
Currently, the president said, a bill is before parliament for GYEEDA and registration will start for 100,000 young people by the end of this year, adding, “Let me assure Ghanaians that NDC is a party for ordinary people, unlike other parties where they look at your pedigree.”
President Mahama indicated that Government did not sponsor Anas’ judiciary investigations. “We have nothing to do with it; the former Finance Minister, Duffour, sponsored Anas in the cocoa investigation,” he said adding that the late President Atta Mills contracted Anas for the CEPS corruption scandal.
He announced that four roads had been earmarked for construction in the Northern Region. They are Walewale-Gambaga, Tamale-Karaganda, Gushegu, Yendi-Saboba and Kpandai-Bimbilla roads, assuring the people of these areas that work would start before the 2016 electioneering campaign.
He cautioned all the parliamentary aspirants of the NDC that the system of electing parliamentary candidates affected the party in the last election. It resulted in the party losing 22 seats. He urged the aspirants to be prepared to accept the results of the elections come November 21. “We don’t want failed aspirants wanting to become independent candidates. The system is not perfect but the NDC is the first to try. Party executives must start teaching party members how to cast their ballots to avoid spoilt ballots,” he entreated.