President John Mahama is expected to deliver his last state of the nation address before the November 7 general elections next Thursday, February 25.
As required by the constitution, the president will be updating parliament on the state of the economy and the policies in place to fix the challenges confronting the country.
He will also update the nation on the status of Ghana’s performance since it entered into a three-year financial bailout agreement with the International Monetary fund. Paramount among the expectations are measures put in place to ensure a smooth and credible elections.
Last year, the President promised to improve infrastructure in his address.
“Mr. Speaker, just as the basic structure of our economy has remained virtually unchanged since our transition to a free, self-governing nation, our basic infrastructure has not been greatly expanded since the early days of our liberation. Back then our population was significantly smaller and distributed more evenly between the urban and rural areas.
“Mr. Speaker, in 2000 Ghana’s population was roughly 18.9 million; by 2010 it had increased by more than 30% to 24.6 million. In order to sustain and enhance our projected rate of growth over the long term, it is absolutely necessary that we develop and expand our infrastructure to support expanded economic activity and to guarantee rapid socioeconomic development. Current estimates indicate an annual funding gap of about four billion cedis if we are to effectively tackle our infrastructure challenges and expand them as a catalyst for growth.
“Mr. Speaker, following the announcement by the Hon Minister for Finance when he presented the 2014 Budget Estimates to this august house, I have moved quickly to set up an Advisory team to lead the way for the operationalization of the Ghana Infrastructure Fund.
“Mr. Speaker, we made clear commitments to the nation in the 2012 manifesto to embark on an aggressive expansion of the country’s infrastructure. Pursuant to this commitment, a number of major investments have been made as part of our strategic infrastructure programme in the road, transport, energy, water, housing and communications sectors,” he said.
The State of the Nation Address is a constitutional requirement that enables the President to inform the nation about current conditions of all sectors of the country.