Communications Director of the New Patriotic Party, Nana Akomeah has exposed gaping holes in his flagbearer’s promise to build one factory in each of the 216 districts if he becomes President.
Nana Akomeah who was trying to defend the pledge made by Nana Akufo Addo admitted the party is yet to consult experts and the private sector on the feasibility of the promise. This was in response to a question about specifics on the type of factories and what they will be producing.
MP for Obuasi West, Kweku Kwarteng, a member of the party’s Trade and Industry team also stated the same position in a separate interview.
NPP’s Communications Director who was speaking on Joy FM’s Super Morning Show on Monday, admitted it’s an ambitious promise but said even if 100 of such factories are built it is a positive action.
“Yes it is an ambitious plan and you need that to transform this country…What you need is the leadership to do that,” he noted.
Nana Akomeah’s defense is generating further debate and has raised eyebrows about the sincerity of promises made by Politicians and the need for the public to be on the lookout for similar campaigns to avoid being lured into believing and voting for leaders who will only make excuses for failed promises.
Nana Akufo Addo who was addressing NPP supporters during his tour of the Ajumako/Enyan/Essiam, Mfantseman and Abura/Asebu/Kwamankese constituencies in the Central Region on Saturday, assured Ghanaians, that he is not into the politics of deception, as the NPP has proven time and over to possess the policies and programmes needed to move this country forward.
NPPs promise comes in the wake of public criticism for its failed attempt to undermine the 36.5 million dollar Komenda Sugar Factory which was commissioned by President Mahama last month.
NPP’s flagbearer has made a litany of promises ahead of the party’s manifesto launch. These include reduction of taxes, reduction in electricity bills, reduction in water tariffs, his pledge to restore allowances for teacher and nursing trainees among others.
Economist and financial experts are demanding responses on how these can be done when nearly 55 percent of the consolidated fund is spent on public sector waters, SINGLE SPINE alone, and at a time donor funding of the budget has dwindled after Ghana became a lower middle income country.
What Factory Is NPP Talking About?
Local Governance Expert, Issaka Amon Kotei who spoke to the ‘one district one factory promise’ on another radio station, Accra FM, expressed doubt about its feasibility.
“Nana Addo made a vague promise. What type of factory is he talking about? Is it the Nkatie Borger type, popcorn or a Gari processing factory? Many of these baby factories are in the system so what is he talking about? What we need is to help revamp them. Nana Addo spoke in the Central Region at a time the nation is debating Komenda Sugar Factory so Nana Addo must come clear. What model is he following? Such huge promises without clues give room for all kinds of analysis. The NPP flagbearer cannot assume electorates are dummies these days. What happened to the Presidential special initiatives which were cited ion a handful of district?” Engineer Amon Kotei stated.
He explained that in economics and governance, models are used to buttress reason for policy statements. He said the NPP can save itself from further criticism and doubt if it comes clear on how it intends to finance the factories.
He noted that politicians making campaign promises will do themselves good if they back their promises with workable plans for public scrutiny.
Engineer Issaka Amon Kotei asked if the NPP has factored in infrastructure and access to electricity, water and roads. That he said would have been a strong attraction should government depend on the private sector.
“MASLOC is assisting small entrepreneurs, the National Board for Small Scale Industries (NBSSI) is there and already dealing with these factories already established. We can look at the comparative advantage of all districts and plan properly and not to promise before scrutinizing the reality on the ground and expert advice. ”…he added.
The NDC government is already campaigning on some key achievements. These include the Komenda Sugar Factory which has been rebuilt after nearly 40 decades of neglect and failed promises. Another of such facility in the pipeline for Savlugu in Northern Ghana. President Mahama’s administration is also referring to the Kumasi Shoe Factory, Northern Star Tomato Factory at Pwalugu, the enabling environment which has also facilitated the establishment of Diamond Cement Factory at Buipe in the Northern region and Dangote Cement Factory which is also expanding production, all creating jobs for hundreds of youth.
Pharmaceutical companies also through EDIAF are doing well. Tobinco Pharmaceuticals is receiving $6million; Ernest Chemists $10million; while Dannex Pharmaceuticals would also receive $3 million dollars. The Poultry Revitalization Project is helping to boost the local poultry industry while rice imports have reduced by nearly a third.
The NPP promises come at a time the Mahama led administration says it’s on course and already transforming Ghana. President John Mahama has assured the public the needed infrastructure to lay the foundation for accelerated industrial growth. These are in the areas of road infrastructure. Key among the road projects some of which cut through cocoa growing areas and the food basket are Eastern Corridor roads, the Accra-Kumasi Highway which has virtually been completed, Tarkwa-Ayanful-Bogoso road, Agona Junction to Elubo highway, the147-kilometer Fufulso-Sawla Road in the Northern Region, the 60-kilometer Anwia-Nkwanta-Assin Praso road and several Cocoa roads including the Gand of Six, which have received over three billion cedis in funding.
On the energy front, favourable policies have attracted Independent Power Producers, the Atuabo Gas Processing Plant which guarantees cheap source of fuel for the thermal plants and other investments in wind, solar and coal in the future.