Dr Mahamudu Bawumia speaking during his engagement with members of Organised Labour
Dr Mahamudu Bawumia speaking during his engagement with members of Organised Labour
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Let’s emancipate our minds from inferiority complex - Dr Bawumia tells Ghanaians

The Vice-President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, has emphasised that the country can make great strides if the citizens free their minds from the belief that Ghanaians are not good enough.

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He said “we always think that the whites would have to teach us, and that we have to learn from them and not the other way round”. He, however, expressed optimism that “we can do better than the whites if we put our minds to it”.

Dr Bawumia said this when he met the leadership of the National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT), the Civil and Local Government Staff Association of Ghana (CLOGSAG), the Ghana Medical Association (GMA), the Ghana Registered Nurses and Midwives Association (GRNMA) and the Coalition of Concerned Teachers (CCT) in Accra last Wednesday.

Stakeholder engagements

The meeting was part of Dr Bawumia’s engagement with major groups to solicit their views to be incorporated into the manifesto of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) which has the Vice-President as its flag bearer for the 2024 general election.

“Today, Ghana is the number one country in the world in terms of delivery of medicines by drones, and all the people manning the centres are all Ghanaians. “The digital address that we implemented, we are only the second country in the world to do so. We have the Ghana Card, a digital ID card which the European Union (EU) and the United States of America (USA) are all making effort to introduce. With regard to mobile money interoperability, we are the first country in Africa to do it,” Dr Bawumia said.

Philosophy

“My whole philosophy is that ‘it is possible’ because I believe that our minds sometimes are not emancipated; we do not feel we are good enough and can do better than the white man,” the Vice-President said.

While responding to questions from the group, the flag bearer of the NPP agreed with the unions on calls for the restructuring of the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) on the basis that the workers were the owners of the fund.

He said it was very clear that workers must have a say regarding where the funds were going. Dr Bawumia said the public sector salary structure needed a serious review in the wake of complaints about discrepancies and inconsistencies.

He said the single spine structure was supposed to be a solution to a problem, and once it had not worked out, it called for some discussions to have a system that would correct the issues.

Judicial Service salaries

Responding to a question on a clause in the salaries of staff of the Judicial Service which required the approval of the President, Dr Bawumia assured the service of his support in that regard should he become President.

On education, he said the next NPP administration under his leadership would focus much on basic education just as it had done with the senior high school (SHS) system. He also agreed to a proposal for the introduction of a deprived area incentive allowance for medical professionals to entice more doctors and other health workers to serve in rural areas.

SSNIT restructuring

The Executive Secretary of CLOGSAG and Chairman of the forum, Dr Isaac Bampoe-Addo, pointed out that in collaboration with organised labour, the forum would fight for the restructuring of the governance structure of SSNIT, saying SSNIT’s money was for workers, and not the government’s money.

He said it was not proper that non-contributors to the fund controlled the fund, adding that “we are not going to allow it to happen. “This is workers’ money, and we must control it because the good book says that “where your treasure is, that’s where your heart should be.

“One thing is the ‘apartheid salary’ administration in the public sector, and this is what the single spine sought to cure but the differentials have widened,” Mr Bampoe-Addo said, stressing that the gaps in the salary structure were too big.

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