Business News of Fri, 8 Sep 20179

NDC not anti-business – Mahama

John Dramani Mahama, former President of Ghana, has revealed that most private businesses thrive well in Ghana during the reign of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) government.

Speaking during the maiden lecture at the Institute of Social Democracy located at the NDC’s headquarters in Accra, Mr Mahama said: “We must let people know that our party is not against business. In times that our party has been in government, businesses have prospered the most…Even so-called conservative and property-owning parties in Africa cannot afford to be the kind of conservative parties that we find elsewhere.

“If you go to the developed countries, when the conservatives come to power they whittle away social welfare but in Africa you can’t whittle away social welfare.

“Indeed some of the parties that call themselves conservative parties have moved left from centre and today are involved in social safety nets like National Health Insurance, Free Senior High School and others that are all social democratic programmes and so we must be proud of our ideological orientation and we must redefine it so that people clear the misconception they have about social democracy.”

The NDC, immediately after losing the 2016 elections, decided to set up the institute as part of reforms to recapture political power in future elections.

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Mr Mahama, touching on the purpose of its establishment, said it was not meant to brainwash anybody but to provide leadership skills for members who enrol.

He said: “The thinking was that it will be set up after we entered multi-party democracy but for 25 years, our party has continued without setting up its ideological and party training school, and so I want to congratulate all those who have been behind the setting up of this institute.

“It is a very useful institute and it is going to be a source of knowledge not only to party cadres, but for people who have the ideological orientation of social democracy to gain ideas of leadership, nationalism and patriotism. I am very happy and I want to congratulate those who have brought this idea to birth.”

He added: “Contrary to widespread perception, institutes like this are not institutes for indoctrinating people. The perception in the First Republic was that the ideological institutes were set up to brainwash and to become ideologically robust of the governing party.

“But this is not the case. If you look at the curriculum of the ideological institute, it contains programmes of leadership, how to lead in a community, it contains programmes of party activism, it also contain programmes of community self-help, it contains programmes of nationalism, patriotism – how to be patriotic to your country.”

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