President John Dramani Mahama thinks governing the country is all about taking pictures and posting them on Facebook and celebrating one million likes on the social networking site, whereas critical issues affecting Ghanaians are left unattended to, Muspaha Hamid, Spokesperson for the presidential nominee of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) has said.Mr Hamid’s comments are a reaction to Mr Mahama’s description of Nana Akufo-Addo’s ‘one-village-one-dam’ campaign promise as outmoded.
While speaking on Metro TV’s Good Evening Ghana on Tuesday September 6, Mr Mahama said: “What we call a dam in the north is a dugout and every village has a dugout, it’s a pond. We used to drink from it in the north when there was no water. But now that most of the communities have water, the dug-outs are used for livestock watering.”
Apart from the ‘1 village, 1 dam’ policy, Nana Akufo-Addo has also promised to build a factory in all 216 districts in the country. But Mr Mahama has poured water on that as well. “In the free school programme, when you came down to the figures and the nitty-gritty, he found it very difficult to explain. It is the same thing that is happening here. You just throw out a promise that is yesterday’s campaigning in those days, my father’s time. You just throw out something and people just pick it: ‘one village, one dam’. They don’t know if it is a dug-out or a barrage dam or a proper irrigation dam, they don’t know. But then just that you say ‘one village, one dam’, ‘one village, one factory’, what kind of factory? Is it a car assembling plant? Is it the kind of factories that we know? Is it electronic appliances, textiles and garments or small and medium enterprises? If it is small that is happening already. If you talk about those factories, people’s perceptions of factories differ. He has to clarify,” he said.
“This thing about one factory per district came up under the rural enterprise project. It’s not a new idea; it’s a very old idea. If you are talking about small and medium enterprises, like gari-making factories, small processing companies, and the use of gratis machines; that is happening already. So the promises are not new.”
But speaking on Accra News on Wednesday September 7, Mr Hamid said President Mahama has reduced governance to issues that do not matter to the ordinary Ghanaian.
“He thinks governance is about one million likes on Facebook as well as taking Usain Bolt-styled pictures and uploading them on Facebook. Those things do not matter to Ghanaians, they do not put food on the table of Ghanaians, and they do not solve the unemployment and health menace in the country. Rather than spending huge amount of money buying land cruisers to chiefs, we will spend those monies in building the factories and the dams. One Land Cruiser costs GHS400,000; we will not use this money to buy Land Cruisers for the chiefs, we will use it to provide the factories. The cost of one Pick-Up can be used in providing 18 dugouts, we will not use the money to buy Pick-Ups, rather we will use it to develop the factories,” he said.