Opinion: NPP’s call for social interventions implemented by NDC is borne out of ignorance-Public Policy Expert

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The call for NDC to show “one social intervention it implemented” can only be described as a call by someone who does not read and hardly understands the purpose of governance.

Governments exist to provide public goods, which includes functions as vital as launching and implementing social interventions programs.

NDC stands taller than NPP in this provision. It is imperative that those who clothe themselves in the cocoon of ignorance read to enrich their knowledge and utter responsible statements.

Before itemizing NDC’s social interventions, lemme first underscore the reasons NPP keeps bringing this debate.

  1. NPP has been so mediocre in its performance. In other words, this governing party has nothing to show for all its promises and loads contracted in government

It is obvious that they cannot match NDC’s infrastructure achievement record. An attempt to seek refuge in Kufour’s social interventions will not help them. They (NPP) have been a disappointment in providing social intervention programs.

  1. Each time NPP has come against the wall, they seek to use their pet (social intervention debate) to divert attention. The current state of the Ghanaian economy, especially the exchange rate has so badly exposed Dr. Bawumia’s credibility as the competent economist that he hoodwinked Ghanaians to trust the NPP, hence voting for it.

It appears to me that, this challenge coming from the Vice President stems from a very poor understanding of what Social Interventions are.

By the way, some two months ago, I listened to a BBC documentary where the British expert illustrated how roads, when constructed count for Social Interventions to the extent that they save lives, and keep families from falling into destitution due to accidents and deaths of breadwinners; Good roads facilitate easy access to markets from farm gates and health care facilities.

It is  therefore absolute dishonesty to contrive a narrow minded definition for “Social Interventions” to score a nonexistent parochial objective.

These are SOME of the social interventions carried out by NDC:

  1. NDC built numerous market stalls for women to earn livelihoods
  2. NDC introduced the Ayalolo metro mass transit with free on-board WiFi.
  3. NDC introduced free fertilizer to cocoa farmers
  4. NDC introduced the Primary Health Care System.
  5. NDC built CHP compounds funded by personal contributions from appointees to aid the rural healthcare delivery.
  6. NDC built the best of all healthcare infrastructure and systems to save lives in Ghana.
  7. NDC introduced rural electrification which NPP resisted while in opposition at the time.
  8. NDC built the most expansive/ extensive urban and rural community water projects to eliminate the Kuffour gallons and bring relief to women and children. There can be no social intervention comparable to water provision.
  9. NDC implemented the LEAP
  10. NDC introduced and implemented the progressively free SHS
  11. NDC offered cash incentives to poor families to maintain their wards in schools.
  12. NDC built new school blocks.
  13. NDC removed schools under trees.

One can not regard free SHS as social intervention and ignore the provision of education infrastructure.

  1. NDC gave out free locally assembled computers to students.
  2. NDC distributed free school uniforms.
  3. NDC distributed free school sandals.
  4. Heavily subsidised Premixed fuel was introduced by NDC.
  5. Capitation grant for public schools
  6. NDC offered free bus rides to school children and the elderly.
  7. NDC introduced and implemented the Youth Enterprise Support project.
  8. NDC introduced Cuban scholarships.
  9. NDC re-introduced Russian government scholarships
  10. NDC introduced the Cuban medical brigades.
  11. Skills training, provision of tools & equipment and repatriation/resettlement of urban head porters (kayaye)
  12. Training and equipping of rural youths and women, to curb the rural/urban migration.
  13. SME startup funds were made available to rural enterprises owners for them to thrive and eke out a living.
  1. Free cocoa seedlings were equally distributed to cocoa farmers.
  2. It should be noted that, NDC also gave out free textbooks to pupils
  3. NDC resurrected and revamped the comatose State Transport Corporation for long distance travels
  4. Payment of premium to cocoa farmers, not forgetting the fact that cocoa producer prices were increased over time. This, NPP has failed to do
  5. The usual burdens associated with Muslim pilgrimages were greatly eased through the provision of pre departure shelter and processing. Prospective pilgrims from the North did not have to travel all the way to Accra again before flying out. (Tamale airport)
  6. NDC introduced a policy that aimed at providing sanitary pads for adolescents who could not afford pads as a result of poverty and have had to stay away from schools because of heavy menstrual flow. The case of Loloto JHS in the Kpandai district as reported by JOY FM is a refreshing example. We still remember like yesterday, when the entire NPP, led by their members of Parliament ridiculed and rejected this policy in Parliament.

It makes me wonder when NPP knew the usefulness of social interventions.

I could go on and on.

Please note that, NDC did all these things and still managed to build the most and prestigious part of Ghana’s infrastructure. So, anything beautiful you find in Ghana today, is most likely built by NDC.

The fact is that, NPPs achievement is a joke when it comes to government delivery, not to talk about social interventions.

NPP does little but makes big noise.

NDC does big with little or no publicity.

You remember how NPP launched the trainee allowances with brass band.

These are guys who will commission toilets with the President in attendance.

RESOLVING SOME CONTROVERSIES:

HEALTH INSURANCE:

Health insurance was first conceptualized and piloted by NDC during Rawlings.

NPP introduced mutual health insurance during Kuffour. But NDC scaled it to National Health Insurance during Mills/Mahama.

SCHOOL FEEDING:

When we were all growing up, we were fed in schools. So school feeding is not an innovation by NPP.

MASS TRANSIT SYSTEM:

Again, we all saw and enjoyed TATA buses, OSA buses etc.

So it was not introduced by NPP.

FREE MATERNAL HEALTH CARE.

If anything at all, NPP only cancelled and reintroduced what they came to meet by removing some exemptions from the policy.

This is what the NPP in paragraph 126 of its 2001 budget said; “In the 2000 Financial Year Government continued to fulfill its commitment to poverty reduction and allocated about 17.4 per cent of total Government expenditure for the provision of basic services for the poor and free medical attention for pregnant women, infants, the aged and for others and selected diseases qualified for exemptions”.

That’s NPP obviously referencing what is contained in Kwesi Botwey’s budget statement of 2000, admitting what they inherited.

FREE SHS:

This is not nouvelle. Nothing new.

NPP itself admits that, people from the north were enjoying free education and it was about time for the rest of the country to also enjoy free education.

Secondly, if people of the North were already enjoying their free education before Nana Addo came, then his free SHS didn’t offer anything new to them.

Finally, even in their own free SHS, implementation was not universal. It was and still is progressive till the final batch of students are covered.

By the way, most of NPP policies are being haphazardly implemented as they lack strategic backing with documented policy guidelines.

Written by:

A.W. SULLEYMAN.

Public Policy Expert,

Development Finance Major,

Certified Public Private Partnership (PPP) specialist,

Development Economist.

Source: BestNewsGH.com

 

 


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Kennedy Mornah is an Award Winning Ghanaian Journalist with over two decades of experience in the Ghanaian Media landscape spanning the electronic, print and digital media. He is a Media Consultant, a Corporate MC, Radio and TV Host, Founder and Publisher of the Maritime and Transport Digest Newspaper, Businessman, a Go getter and an optimist. He has worked for renowned media organizations including Diamond Fm in Tamale, Luv Fm in Kumasi, Oman Fm in Accra and Starr Fm in Accra In 2017 he received the Reporter of the Year Award at the Ghana Shippers Awards in Accra, Ghana.

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