President John Dramani Mahama has expressed the hope that customer complaints that have characterised the new electricity billing system will be substantially addressed by next month.
“Recently, there have been complaints about anomalies in electricity bills received by electricity consumers across the country. We have tasked the inter-sector task force to promptly resolve the problem.
“They have analysed the complaints and it is my hope that starting from the new billing cycle in July, most of the public complaints that have been made by consumers of electricity will be largely resolved,” he said.
Addressing the 24th anniversary celebration of the founding of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) in Accra last Friday, the President also spoke positively about the country’s medium-term prospects.
“The country’s medium-term growth prospect is strong with 8.2 per cent in 2017 and moderating to 7.8 per cent in 2018 under the assumption that the current fiscal reforms that we are undertaking will remain on track with the support of our international development partners,” he said.
Human development report
President Mahama also mentioned the United Nations Development Programme’s (UNDP) Human Development report for 2015 which was impressive.
“The report placed Ghana in the Medium Human Development category with a score (0.579) and this score is higher than most of our peers not only in our sub-region but on our African continent.
“This feat of 0.579 is the highest Ghana has ever attained. Ghana’s score in 2000 was 0.552 (55.2 per cent) and in 2008, it was 0.553 (55.3 per cent), representing a 0.1 percentage points only.
According to the UNDP report, in six short years, between 2009 and 2014, we have increased our Human Development Index by 2.6 percentage points to 0.579 (57.9 per cent),” the President said.
He said the statistics were testament to the fact that “this country is going forward and she is not going back’’.
Education sector growing
In various sectors of education, the President said significant growth had been chalked up.
He said Ghana had chalked up the highest ever access to education as over 90 per cent of children of school age had been enrolled.
In all, over 9.2 million pupils and students are currently enrolled in schools in Ghana.
“We have done this by pulling down one after another some of the most seemingly intractable barriers that have hindered progress of the nation in this particular sector.
“Today, the average Ghanaian child stands a much greater chance of attending school than ever before and there is, therefore, every likelihood that s/he would do so in a more decent condition than ever before.
“Being born a girl today under the NDC is no longer a reason why you would be denied education because we have achieved gender parity in school enrolment,” he added.
Removal of school under trees
President Mahama said 1,600 schools under trees had been replaced with modern infrastructure and teaching and learning materials.
On his flagship Community Day SHS programme, the President stated that students were benefitting from the schools which had been completed.
“We expect that by November 7, we will be able to put at least 70 of these schools into operation. And as I have said, we are currently working on 123 of them.
“This is what I mean when we say we are changing lives and transforming Ghana,” the President told the party gathering.
President Mahama expressed delight that the University of Health and Allied Sciences would in July this year graduate its first batch of graduates.
Investment in health
The President said the government continued to invest heavily in the health sector
“We have invested about US$2 billion to bring quality healthcare to our people. We are creating more than 6,000 new hospital beds in this short period which will open up employment for about 12,000 nurses and other health professionals.
“Modern health facilities are springing up at a rapid rate in urban and hugely populated areas while very decent facilities are also being provided in the remote areas,” he said.
Additionally, he said equal attention was being paid to the provision of equipment and the training of health professionals at all levels of the health delivery system.
“In short, healthcare in Ghana has improved tremendously under the NDC’s watch. This is a fact born out of impressive health statistics in health seeking-behaviour, maternal and neo-natal health, life expectancy and a host of other major health indicators,” he said.
While stating that flooding was a natural occurrence, the President added, “rainfall has become erratic and sometimes falls in significant quantities in a very short period of time.”http://ghanapoliticsonline.com/
On last week’s parts of Accra flooding, he said “184.2mm of rain fell within the period that we had the downpour. Much work still needs to be done. We have removed 487,000 tonnes of silt from the drains in Accra and I believe that if we had not removed as much silt, the flooding that happened yesterday would have been worse,” he said
Pressure on Accra
President Mahama indicated that various suggestions on how the pressure on Accra could be eased had come up.
“Accra’s population is estimated to have exceeded the four million mark so we will continue to appraise these suggestions and see whether these are alternatives that we can look at so that we ease the perennial flooding and congestion that Accra is subjected to,” the President said.