Students of the University of Cape Coast (UCC) on Saturday February 13, 2016, embarrassed Dr. Mahmud Bawumia, the running mate on the presidential ticket of the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) when they refused to attend a public lecture scheduled to be addressed by him.
Dr. Bawumia was invited as a Special Guest of Honour by ?Help A Friend Foundation?, an NGO owned by the NPP aspiring Parliamentary Candidate for Cape Coast North, Barbara Asher Ayisi, but when the NPP running mate arrived, barely a third of the 680 capacity auditorium was filled with guests who were mostly NPP sympathizers and students wing of the party-TESCON. http://ghanapoliticsonline.com/
It is unclear why the students of one of the most respected universities in the country showed apathy towards the visit of Dr. Bawumia. The Republic Newspaper gathered from some students and critics that the UCC event for Dr. Bawumia was a flop because of his infamous reputation for delivering political propaganda disguised as economic analysis.
Critics contend that in the past, Dr. Bawumia had been ?intellectually dishonest? in most of his public lectures on the state of the Ghanaian economy. This has earned him massive backlash from critics after series of lectures he delivered in the past, particularly at the UCC and the Central University College (CUC).
The students of UCC may have taken a cue from one of their lecturers, Dr. John Gartchie Gatsi, an economic lecturer from the Department of Accounting and Finance at the School of Business, University of Cape Coast, who had recently dismissed Dr. Bawumia?s analysis as highly political as being an economic analysis.
?I do understand that now because he is an active politician seeking to come to power, about 50 per cent of the interpretation could be captured in political advantage,? stated Dr. Gatsi.
Dr. Bawumia, a former Deputy Governor of the Bank of Ghana-turned politician, has often received public flak for virtually turning academic and economic presentations into a political platform where he always presents a saintly picture of the erstwhile NPP administration in comparison to the current National Democratic Congress (NDC) administration.
A bulk of his analysis has been akin to doom saying towards the economic future of Ghana, particularly when he proclaimed that Ghana?s the John Mahama administration?s decision to opt for an IMF bailout would further devastate the Ghanaian economy. He ascribed the decision to economic mismanagement
In his criticism of the NDC?s IMF relations, Dr. Bawumia ignored the fact that Ghana had had a long history of going to the IMF for balance of payment and technical support.
Indeed, Dr. Bawumia?s administration-The NPP, went to the IMF twice between 2001 and 2008. In 2009 the NDC government went to the IMF for balance of payment support after taking over from the NPP. This fact had been conveniently overlooked by Dr. Bawumia whose credibility has taken a massive dip in the past months.
The IMF which recently released over US$ 900 million to Ghana in a landmark bailout believes the economic prospects are bright for Ghana, ?we think it?s entirely feasible for Ghana to achieve that fiscal adjustment, both in terms of reinforcing its revenue efforts, increasing revenues,? The IMF Director for the African Department Antoinette Sayeh told a group of journalists at the last Spring Meeting of the IMF in Washington DC.
Latest reports indicates that the dire economic challenges that faced Ghana recently had taking a positive turn as almost all economic indicators have begun registering positive prospects: Inflation has started easing downwards, treasury bill rates are experiencing steady decline while the local currency is regaining its strength, while the debilitating energy crisis have been recently reversed.
This has been as a result of radical reforms initiated by Finance Minister Seth Terkper , aimed at cutting down budgetary deficits and waste in government expenditure while trying to reverse the downward spiral of major economic indicators.