The President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has described John Dramani Mahama’s time in office as an unmitigated disaster, adding that his economic track record, from 2013 to 2016 was abysmal.
President Akufo-Addo said this on Friday, 10th September 2021, in response to a question posed by a journalist at Vovradio, in which she referenced a statement made by former President John Mahama accusing the current government of economic mismanagement. The President is on a tour of the Volta Region, after visiting the Oti Region.
Responding to the statement, the President stated that “I wonder whether this statement was made tongue in cheek by the former president. When you look at the record that this political leader, who can accuse my government of mismanagement, there are a few facts that when you put on the table to compare his performance and mine, it would tell you whether what I am offering the people is economic mismanagement.”
He continued, “I wonder what words should we describe his (Mahama) stewardship of Ghana. It is an unmitigated disaster, that’s what I would call him.”
According to President Akufo-Addo, under the tenure of office of John Mahama, the economic growth rate in 2016 stood at 3.4%, the lowest in two decades; with all other macroeconomic indicators pointing in the wrong direction.
“Inflation, when he left office, was 15.4%; today, at the end of July, which are the last hard facts from the Statistical Service, it’s 9%. Interest rates are always a good determinant of how the economy is operating, 32% in December 2016, today, it is 20.6%. We are talking about treasury bill decline in interest rate, we are talking about the trade deficit that was $1.8 billion in 2016, to a trade surplus of $2.6 billion at the end of 2019,” the President said. He stressed that if these statistics, which, prior to COVID-19, led to Ghana being one of the fastest-growing economies in the world with a GDP of 7%, “can be considered economic mismanagement”, he then wondered what would be the description of the economy managed by John Mahama, which took Ghana into the embrace of the IMF.
Responding again to comments made by John Mahama, asking the government to organise an economic forum, President Akufo-Addo stated that “if the economic forum is going to be a repetition of the so-called Senchi Consensus, then I think I have to spare the people of Ghana this sort of development.”
He continued, “The Senchi Consensus was an unmitigated disaster, out of it we went into the embrace of the IMF with all the difficulties that came from there and the disarray it pointed to in the economy of our country.”
The President, thus, urged former President Mahama to be wary of commenting on matters to do with economic management.
“He is not on strong ground when he is talking about the economy. His track record, I am reluctant to use these strong words, but in normal parlance, I would say it is abysmal and, therefore, he has no lessons to give me at all in the management of the economy,” President Akufo-Addo added.