The poor quality food fed students at the senior high schools is emaciating them, former President John Mahama has said.
As a result, parents are forced to hide their children indoors and feed them with quality fufu and soup for a while, upon their return from school for the holidays, so they can regain their lost weight, Mr Mahama has noted.
Speaking to party delegates in the Bodi Constituency of the Western North Region during his campaign tour, Mr Mahama, who is seeking a comeback, said though the Akufo-Addo government has borrowed almost GHS500 billion since coming to office in 2017, not more than GHS10 billion of that has been funnelled into the much-touted but “poorly implemented” Free SHS initiative, thus, the poor food fed the students in school.
Mr Mahama said Ghanaians are clamouring for the return of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) because they have realised that President Nana Akufo-Addo and the governing New Patriotic Party have destroyed every good thing he bequeathed to them.
For instance, Mr Mahama said during the NDC administration, the Produce Buying Company was buying 30 per cent of cocoa produced by farmers “but today, I’m not sure they buy even more than 3 per cent”.
Also, he said under the NDC, the Tema Oil Refinery did very well but started grinding to a halt form 2017 when President Akufo-Addo took office.
“So, Ghanaians are now clamouring for the NDC to come back to office”, he reiterated.
Mr Mahama acknowledged that even though “Ghana was not paradise under me, at least things were better” compared to the suffering Ghanaians are going through under the Akufo-Addo government.
For example, he said contractors are more getting contracts like they used to, so, they have been forced to lay off many heavy-duty truck drivers.
Additionally, he said commercial drivers are the hardest-hit victims today because they bought a gallon of fuel for GHS14 under the NDC but now buy a litre at the same price.
“They are unable to make any profit for their car owners and themselves”, Mr Mahama decried.
Further, he said traders go to the market and do not make a single sale yet officials from the Ghana Revenue Authority keep harassing them to pay tolls.
As a result, Ghanaians are yearning for the return of the NDC, Mr Mahama emphasised.
“Everywhere I go, I’m given a stone of vindication. Some people even light lanterns in broad daylight and shine them at me. They say they are searching for me because they have been sorely disappointed by the NPP government’s abysmal performance which is in sharp contrast to the mouthwatering promises they made in the lead-up to the 2016 campaign”, Mr Mahama pointed out.
“So, I know there is victory in wait for the NDC”.
In his view, “we lost 2020, too, because we all know what happened. God revealed to me in my prayers that He made us lose because He was taking us out of a big ditch dug by the NPP. He wanted the NPP to fall into their own ditch”.
He accused Mr Akufo-Addo of borrowing so much yet having nothing to show for it.
“If you are a leader, you must be responsible with borrowing, but the NPP has borrowed so much for nothing but consumption”, he said.
Unlike the NPP, Mr Mahama said the NDC borrowed to build several infrastructure that self-defrayed the debt incurred in putting them up.
He listed projects such as the Terminal 3 of the Kotoka International Airport, Kejetia market, University of Ghana Medical Centre, as well as some projects undertaken at the Tema Port, as examples. The former president said his government used GHS54 billion to carry out such development projects and more.
As a result of the voracious borrowing of the NPP administration, he said Ghana’s debt stock of GHS120 billion as existed in 2016, has ballooned to almost 600 billion.