General News of 2014-05-19

Daily Graphic’s last interaction with PV Obeng

With some willpower in the last days of his life, the development architect had several plans to change the course of Ghana’s economic development and help accelerate growth.

In his last interaction with the Daily Graphic at the just-ended National Economic Forum at Senchi in the Eastern Region, the Chairman of the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC), Mr. Paul Victor Obeng, known simply as P.V. Obeng, was very much concerned about the post-forum economic management process.

He spelt out plans to monitor the decisions arrived at the National Economic Forum, dubbed the “Senchi Consensus”.

But he did not live to see his post-National Economic Forum plans materialise.

He was positive and full of hope about what the country could do to accelerate the transition to a higher and sustainable path of development.

When he was asked by the Daily Graphic about whether the forum would be just another one of those several talk forums or not, the man who was described as Ghana’s Prime Minister in the 1990s was upbeat that the forum would achieve results.

Hope

“We will have a post-forum committee that will convert the decisions of the economic forum into actionable work in progress backed by a monitoring and evaluation framework,” the Senior Presidential Advisor had said.

He was even more excited that he would work with a committee that would develop timelines for each of the decisions taken at the forum, a statement of assurance that the 22-point communique adopted at the end of the forum would have measurable timelines.

“I hope to lead a team that will feed the decisions of the forum into the government’s medium-term policy framework,” he said.

At Senchi, Mr. Obeng had been very instrumental in all the deliberations and was arguably described as the chairman of the chairmen.

“What we require as a country is the political commitment to implement the outcomes, and that commitment we have been assured of and so we need to get to work,” he said.

For him, much had been achieved in a year of the Mahama administration in the critical areas of building a resilient economy, investing in people, developing infrastructure and good governance.

The focus of the government, he said, was building a resilient economy that would remain the trusted source of income-generation for the people, as well as the creation of employment avenues for many of the unemployed youth.

Life of late Paul Victor Obeng

He was a mechanical engineer, politician and Chairman of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) Council.

A consummate politician with long years of service, Mr Obeng was appointed in 2010, in the President John Atta Mills administration, as the Chairman of the NDPC.

He was the chief consultant and Chairman of OB Associates, a public and private sector consulting firm, and Chairman of the Ghana Agro Food Company (GAFCO).

He served as the Chairman of the Committee of Secretaries in the Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC) regime from 1982–1992.

He also served as the Presidential Adviser on Governmental Affairs in the first National Democratic Congress (NDC) government from 1992-1997.

He was the Chairman of the Ghana Investment Promotion Council (GIPC) from 1992-1997.

In addition, PV served on the Board of Guinness Ghana Breweries Limited.

He was recently nominated by President Mahama as a Senior Presidential Adviser at the Presidency.

PV Obeng was a product of the Opoku Ware School and the KNUST.