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Opinions Fri, 29 Jun 2012

NPPs Bawumia Needs Tutoring

By Margaret Jackson

June 27, 2012

Ignorance is one of the biggest cankers of the world. But it turns into something else when somebody who some people tout as their God-sent economic magic wand goofs big time by portraying his outright ignorance on something very basic.

Otherwise, why would NPPs Vice-Presidential Candidate, Dr. Mahamadu Bawumia, go all the way to Saamni in the Nalerigu-Gambaga Constituency and inform the people there that the NPP would provide them with free education to the Senior High School (SHS) level when the people in that area since Dr. Kwame Nkrumah’s days have been enjoying that facility up to today?

Is Bawumia so ignorant? Does this so-called high profile economist unaware about this basic information concerning free education to the Northerners up to the SHS level? Even Junior High School students in Ghana and most ordinary Ghanaians know that Northerners for so many decades have enjoyed free education up to the SHS level.

Bawumia, in his anxiety to justify his inclusion as Akufo-Addo’s running mate is just going round littering the political arena with anything that he thinks may polish his amateurish political skills. As a result, Bawumia has become a political attack dog who attacks with little or no facts to back his claims.

I am so baffled that the pressmen/women who covered Bawumia during that campaign mess up at Saamni in the Nalerigu-Gambaga constituency did not catch the goof and reported the news as-is.

Ever since Bawumia was selected by Akufo-Addo as his running mate, this political greenhorn has demonstrated at every political event that he wants to leap the political triple jump instead of learning to do the long jump first, hence his penchant of woefully exposing himself as just an also-run instead of a seasoned politician who has a grasp on the issues confronting Ghanaians. If you remember Bawumia’s goof about inflation calculation when he went to a single market and picked about six items and concluded that due to the rising prices of those items, the lower inflation being touted by the NDC government is a lie since it is not reflecting in the pockets of Ghanaians, you will understand where I am coming from.

Bawumia seems to be running riot in the political gallery wherever he goes by just saying anything that would make President Mills’ government look bad. And he has carefully chosen the Muslim Communities and targeted especially the Northerners by making so many careless statements with the view to blaming the NDC for all the woes in the Northern Region, forgetting that his NPP party was in power for 8 solid years but did nothing to uplift the social and economic woes of the people in that area.

Even at a time that President Mills has flown outside the country for a routine medical check-up and Bawumia’s boss, Nana Akufo-Addo has issued a statement wishing him well, Bawumia would not relent on his attacks by stating that President Mills has rather doubled the hardships of ordinary Ghanaians instead of improving it since he came into office. Where this man is getting his so-called facts and figures to back his unguarded statements, only God knows.

Hear Bawumia in his own words at the Nalerigu-Gambaga constituency, “After lining up in the hot sun to cast our votes, the least we could all expect was to have a government that solves problems and decreases our burden. Unfortunately for us, we have ended up with a government that has day in day out been making our problems worse and one which has failed to solve any of our problems. We certainly don’t deserve this.” I guess the people of Nalerigu-Gambaga did not line up in the hot sun to vote in 2000 and 2004, which was why Bawumia’s party, the NPP, when in power for 8 long years, did nothing for them. Speaking at the 48th Annual Delegates Congress of the Northern Students Union in Bolgatanga recently, Bawumia stated that the Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA) is another failed promise of the NDC government, even though a shea nut processing factory which is expected to provide jobs to thousands of workers was recently commissioned at Buipe in the Northern Region by the Vice-President, John Mahama. The factory which has a ready market in Brazil has an optimum capacity of 40,000 tons with an annual capacity of 12,000 tons which is expected to fetch an income of about $30 million.

As a further boost, the Mills’ government has a 15-member committee on Shea nut to provide the farmers and pickers who are mostly women with minimum guarantee price as pertains within the cocoa sub sector.

It is true that more needs to be done in the north to bridge the north-south economic and social variance, but is Bawumia telling Ghanaians that he is unaware about this shea nut processing factory at Buipe? Or does Bawumia not know that it is the NDC government that established the first university in the north, the University for Development Studies under JJ Rawlings? What about the Pwalugu Tomato Factory now Northern Star Tomato Factory which has been revamped with a minimum capacity of 250 metric tons per day by the NDC government?

I want to go on by asking Bawumia if again he is uninformed about the NDC government’s institution of a Cotton Support Programme in the 3 Northern Regions with a minimum fund of GHC 3.5 million from EDIF and GHC 1.5 million in the form of subsidy from the Ministry of Food and Agriculture.

Is Bawumia who is desperate to prove his political skills just as Akufo-Addo is desperate to become president, also not aware that the NDC government has secured an $8.5 million for 161/34.5 kilo volts power substation, to provide reliable bulk power to the Savannah Diamond Cement Factory Limited at Buipe and that plans are advanced for the establishment of a groundnut processing factory to boost groundnut production and processing in the north? Or is Bawumia playing sheer politics by failing to recognize that the government has earmarked $350 million for the Volta River Authority to establish a hydro power plant at Pwalugu in the Upper East Region to irrigate 15,000 hectares of land for tomato and rice cultivation as well as harnessing fishing in that area?

If I want to talk about the road sector, I can mention the Buipe-Tamale road which is currently under construction at a cost of $40.5 million and GHC 17.1 million. I can also mention the re-gravelling of the Sakpeigu-Nakpanduri Road (Northern Region), upgrading of Chuchuliga-Sandema and Garu Town Roads (Upper East Region and the Tumu-Gwollu-Hamile Road (Upper West Region).

The other day Bawumia went to a Zongo community and accused the current government to stop politics and develop the Zongo communities when in fact the NPP is the guiltiest government that never did anything worthy of mention in the Zongo communities in the country during the 8 years that they were in power.

Somebody should tell Bawumia that, it is not smart campaign to litter your ignorance on the campaign trail. You make a mockery of yourself when you become an attack dog just to get good press coverage without offering any solutions to problems confronting the people. But you put yourself in the political hole if you continually lie about your opponent when voters with critical minds can go back to check on the deceitful information you spill. Bawumia seems to have made political attacks his trademark because not a single day passes without him attacking the Mills’ government. And because the NDC is not hitting back Bawumia probably thinks he is making a good political traction in that deceitful trade, hence he goes laboring on. The truth is that Bawumia will run out of gas soon and very soon smart Ghanaian voters will conclude that when you combine Akufo-Addo and Bawumia you get the same result: Desperation.

http://majjacks80.blogspot.com magjackson80@yahoo.com

Columnist: Jackson, Margaret