Jobs, youth empowerment my focus - Bawumia pledges as he kick-starts Election 2024 campaign

Jobs, youth empowerment my focus - Bawumia pledges as he kick-starts Election 2024 campaign

The Vice-President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, has given an assurance that he will create the right environment for the private sector to create lots of jobs for the youth.


He said by resolving fundamental challenges such as providing a unique national identification system, which had already begun, it would build the confidence of entrepreneurs to know which individuals they were dealing with and that would make private sector businesses to thrive.

Dr Bawumia was addressing a rally of youth in the Eastern regional capital, Koforidua, yesterday on plans he has for the youth of the country at a programme dubbed “Youth Connect”, where the flag bearer of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) started his campaign in an attempt to annex the December 7 presidential election.

“Ghana needs a leader to solve many of the problems relating to the youth which include unemployment, improving the quality of life, increasing access to quality education, reducing the cost of data for internet, increasing life expectancy and creating opportunities for all regardless of socio-economic background,” the NPP flag bearer said.

“I am a problem solver, and a generational thinker with innovative ideas to solving these problems; reducing youth unemployment, increasing life expectancy and creating opportunities for all. I have a solid track record as Vice-President to prove it,” he added.

The Vice-President also mentioned the availability of a functional national address system, which he said would enable entrepreneurs to succeed because they could easily locate customers, a critical factor to business growth and expansion to create more jobs.

“The demand for goods and services will increase once clients in the comfort of their homes or offices could buy a product and it could be easily delivered to them,” he stated.

Dr Bawumia stressed that mobile money interoperability, which he championed, was the solution to another fundamental problem aimed at  making the economy cash-lite to facilitate the basic payments system critical to business growth.

The NPP flag bearer said if the economy was cash-based and there was no interoperability between telecommunication companies and bank accounts, businesses would be constrained and also would be limited.

The Vice-President asked, for instance, that how could an Airtel-Tigo customer pay for a good or service from a seller who had MTN and also, how many customers would be willing to travel a distance to buy a good or service?

Access to credit

Dr Bawumia said businesses thrived when customers could purchase goods and services on credit. He said in an economy with little access to credit, a car manufacturer could produce very few cars because consumers would have to pay upfront and that meant less jobs because it did not require lots of workers.

On the contrary, with easy access to credit, a car manufacturer would produce more and create more jobs, as customers would be required to pay little on a monthly basis so more people could afford, the Vice-President added.

Job creation

Dr Bawumia stated that many of the youth migrated to Europe, America and Asia in search of jobs because there was the notion that there were more jobs in developed countries than in developing countries.

That, he explained, was because many of the jobs created in the developed countries were private sector-led. He mentioned the thousands of jobs created by Amazon, Facebook, Twitter, Microsoft, Tesla and Ford which were all sustainable jobs because they were not dependent on the direct finances or budget of government.

In developing countries, however, the Vice-President said, many of the jobs were created by the government and, therefore, depended on the finances of the state, which limited the number of jobs that could be created.

As Vice-President, Dr Bawumia said: “I solved many of these problems through digitisation to enable Ghana to catch up with the developed countries and create an environment where more sustainable private sector jobs could be created to reduce youth unemployment significantly.”

The Vice-President said he had championed interventions to solve those identified fundamental challenges such as the unique national identification system, with the Ghana Card, and the introduction of the digital address system and the mobile money interoperability to allow customers of one telco to transfer mobile money to customers of another telco.

“Majority of adults did not have a bank account. Many people faced difficulties in opening a bank account. As a result of mobile money interoperability, over 90 per cent of adult Ghanaians now practically have a bank account,” Dr Bawumia explained.

“To open a bank account today, all you need is a Ghana Card and a mobile phone. No filling of forms is needed, ” he added. Vice-President Bawumia said unsecured micro loans were now available through mobile money with interest paid on balances.

Fundamental pillars

With these fundamental pillars now in place, Dr Bawumia indicated how young Ghanaians who did not have the required capital to rent a physical space or shop to trade in were now able to skip that hurdle as they traded using social media platforms such as Instagram and Facebook.


Dr Bawumia stressed that with a new individualised credit scoring system which, he said, would be launched by the end of this year, banks would have trust and confidence in a borrower’s identity and traceability.

That, he said, would obviously bring down the cost of credit and improve access to credit.


Touching on education, the NPP flag bearer said the country had recorded an increase in enrolment in senior high schools (SHSs) from 800,000 in 2016 to 1.4 million by 2022, while the performance of the students at the West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) was also the best since 2015.

He said the no guarantor student loan policy introduced for students with the Ghana Card had come in handy to resolve challenges of young people funding their education at the tertiary level.


Health, others

On health, Dr Bawumia mentioned a number of interventions, including the national electronic pharmacy platform and the use of drones to deliver blood, vaccines and other critical medicine to remote parts of the country.

He said the digitisation and networking of all hospitals, over 300 of them, was underway, with all teaching and regional hospitals completed so far. Dr Bawumia said 8,876 youth had benefited from the Skills Towards Employability and Productivity (STEP) in online digital marketing, APP development, dressmaking, cosmetology, hairdressing, satellite dish installation, with start-up tools, in addition to the payment of apprenticeship fees to Mastercraft Persons since 2018.

Dr Bawumia also mentioned the construction of 10 youth resource centres across 10 administrative regions of the country.

Way forward

Recounting his vision for the country should he become President from 2025, Dr Bawumia said, he intended to formalise the informal sector by registering informal businesses through digitisation in a few minutes and facilitating access to credit for business expansion.


He said there would be an enhanced focus on TVET education with his government supporting the establishment of a National Open University Ghana in collaboration with the private sector, with focus on technical and vocational skills, and information and communications technology (ICT).

He said the government would collaborate with the private sector to train at least a million youth in IT skills, including software developers to provide job opportunities worldwide.

Dr Bawumia insisted that he had a compelling vision for Ghana and that “I can say in all humility that I am the better candidate for the presidency of Ghana as a result of my experience, track record, commitment to fighting corruption, qualifications, my work ethics and my vision for Ghana.”

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