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“Immediately I told fisherfolk on my tour of the Central Region that I will ban pair trawling when I win the elections, the President, a few days later, also went to the region and directed the marine police to arrest all pair trawlers. Till date, have you heard of anyone engaged in pair trawling being arrested since the President issued that directive?”
This question posed by Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo was met with a resounding “No” by fisherfolk and residents of Chokor, on Tuesday, June 14, 2016, when the NPP 2016 presidential candidate of the New Patriotic Party, toured the Ablekuma South constituency.
Visiting the Chorkor “Tuesday” market, “Tea Garden”, Chemunaa, and Korle Gonor, the NPP flagbearer opined that Ghana can no longer be run on the fuel of propaganda, lies and deceit, explaining that the myriad of problems confronting the Ghanaian people is as a result of a clueless government that has no plan on how to return Ghana onto the path of progress and prosperity.
In view of this, Nana Akufo-Addo has assured Ghanaians that his government, God-willing from 2017, is “coming to change Ghana and bring jobs and wealth to every part of Ghana.”
Addressing residents at Chemunaa, Nana Akufo-Addo associated himself with the concerns of fisherfolk, who bemoaned the rapid depletion of marine stocks due to the Mahama government’s refusal to clamp down on illegal fishing methods such as pair trawling, much to the detriment of the fortunes of local fishermen.
He indicated that pair trawling is persisting because of the lack of political will. An Akufo-Addo government, he added, is going to have the courage to do what is right for the survival of the country.
“Our seashore and environment are part of the heritage bequeathed to us by our ancestors, and we have a duty to leave that heritage for those who are coming after us. That is what we are going to do, and I want you to have that assurance,” he added.
His priority as President, he added, will be to bring jobs to all Ghanaians, including the large numbers of unemployed youth resident in Chorkor.
“With proper policies and the right people in charge, who will not steal the money of the poor people of Ghana, we will succeed. I can assure you that I am not coming to steal the monies of Ghanaians. I am coming to work hard to bring relief to all, so there’s wealth and prosperity in every part of Ghana,” he stressed.
Citing the booming economy in neighbouring Cote d’Ivoire, as opposed to the decline being witnessed in Ghana, Nana Akufo-Addo stated that “leadership is the difference between Cote d’Ivoire and Ghana. We (in the NPP) are prepared to provide that leadership to move our country forward.”
Ignore ethnocentric propaganda
At “Tea Garden”, the NPP flagbearer called on the people of Chorkor to ignore propaganda making the rounds that he is ethnocentric and dislikes Gas.
“I know they say a lot of negative things about me. They insult and denigrate me. They say I do not like Gas. I was born right here in Swalaba, so how anybody can say I hate Gas beats my imagination. If this is so, then it means I do not like myself. My wife is Ga, and yet they say I do not like Gas. How is this possible?” he asked.
Continuing, he added that “they say I am an old man, who cannot even walk. You have seen me for yourself. It is only people who have no message for the people of Ghana who will resort to insults, lies and propaganda. Mahama’s government has shown they have no plans for Ghana’s development, and that is why they always rain insults on me.”
Reiterating his commitment to reducing electricity tariffs, the NPP flagbearer also indicated that, in addition to reducing water tariffs, “senior high school education will be free for all school-going children.”
Support the NPP
At the Chorkor market, which was the NPP flagbearer’s first port of call, he interacted with market women and traders, listening to their concerns and assuring them of a reversal of the country’s dwindling fortunes under his government, God-willing, from 2017.
The market, which was constructed by the government of President Kufuor in 2004, has not seen any facelift, since 2009, when the NPP government left office.
To this end, Nana Akufo-Addo appealed to the market women to “help and support me this year. The NPP has the men and women who can do much better for Ghana, than what is currently on offer. I have come to visit you today to appeal for your support.”
He continued,“Ghana is not in a good place. Everything is in a mess, the least said about electricity tariffs the better. However, I want to assure you that when you give me your mandate, I will make sure that electricity tariffs are reduced. We are coming to do a job for Ghana, so we can provide jobs for everybody and thereby create wealth for the masses.”
Look up to me this year, he told the market women, and “repose your confidence in me and I assure you that I will not disappoint you.”
Restoration of nursing training allowances
At the School of Hygiene, located at the Korle bu Teaching hospital, Nana Akufo-Addo stated that the foundation of any successful nation rests on the provision of a solid educational and healthcare infrastructure.
“We are going to build a decent healthcare system here in Ghana. What this means is that, for those of you who are studying to be health professionals, we have a duty to look after you. That is why in Kufuor’s time when he did not have oil, he was able to pay nursing and teacher training allowances. Mahama, with oil, has, because of mismanagement, cancelled these allowances. God-willing, I win these elections, teacher training, and nursing training allowances are coming back,” he said.
He continued, “We are going to create the situation where everybody can find work to do. Ghana needs all of you to be working, and not to be sitting at home for 3 or 4 years , but to be working and putting your talents to use for the benefit of society. That is what is going to happen.”
Nana Akufo-Addo urged the people of Chorkor also to vote for the NPP’s parliamentary candidate for the constituency, Jerry Ahmed Shaib, stating that he has proven over time to have the concerns of the people of Chorkor at heart, and will deliver, unlike others.