Delegates attending the Kumasi conference of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) on Sunday went into a frenzy when the Vice President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia was invited to address the conference.
There was loud applause and cheers following the mentioning of Dr Bawumia's name to address the conference by the MC.Follow @Graphicgh
As soon as the MC announced that it was the turn of Dr. Bawumia to address the Conference, delegates spontaneously occupied the front of the VIP daise, as they chanted the name of the Vice President.
The number of delegates who had occupied the space kept soaring and security personnel, as well as the MCs had difficult time controlling them and getting them to return to their seats.
The Vice President himself was left stunned by the spontaneous reaction, as he was unable to begin his address due to the cacophonius cheers by the delegates.
As it proved extremely difficult to control the massive show of support, the Vice President himself intervened by pleading with the delegates to resume their seats.
However, they ignored the cheers of the man they were cheering and kept on chanting his name.
Calm eventually returned after several pleas from the MCs, and the Vice President gave his address which highlighted challenges the Akufo-Addo government inherited from the NDC, and how the government has taken steps to address some of the challenges to reduce sufferings of Ghanaians.
The Vice President also called on party faithful to unite, as the government takes decisive steps to get the country out of the effects of Covid-19, which has ravaged economies around the world.
The spontaneous show of love and support for the Vice President at the National Delegates Conference in Kumasi, without doubt, is an indication of his growing status as the party's leading contender to succeed President Akufo-Addo as the party's leader and flagbearer for the 2024 elections.
Below is a copy of the full address by Dr Bawumia
REMARKS DELIVERED BY VICE PRESIDENT MAHAMUDU BAWUMIA AT THE 2021 NPP NATIONAL ANNUAL DELEGATES CONFERENCE, KUMASI
The National Chairman of the New Patriotic Party, Hon. Freddie Blay,
Your Excellency President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo
Your Excellency, Former President John Agyekum Kufuor,
Members of the National Council of the NPP,
Honourable Ministers of State
Honourable Members of Parliament,
Distinguished Elders of our Party,
Chiefs and Traditional Leaders,
Members of the Diplomatic Corps,
National, Regional, Constituency, and Polling Station Executives,
Rank and file of the great Kukrudu Family,
Representatives of other political parties,
Members of the Media,
This is our first annual delegates conference since the 2020 election. Congratulations to each and everyone of us for our victory. My thanks to everyone including our footsoldiers, polling station executives, electoral area coordinators, constituency executives, regional executives, and national executives and party supporters who in diverse ways worked so hard for this victory; those who were in the markets, those who went door to door, those who contributed resources, those who manned the polling stations, those who collated our results, those who secured our pink sheets, and so on. Ayekoo to all of you!
Interestingly, the NDC decided to challenge our victory at the Supreme Court. However, rather than mounting a serious effort, they rather went there to tell us that they were given tea without biscuits!
You remember that when we went to the Supreme Court after the 2012 election we presented over 10,000 pink sheets. We told the Court that we were relying on the data contained in the Pink Sheets because “You and I were not there”. When Asiedu Nketia went to the Supreme Court he said rather surprisingly that they were not there to challenge the results! Really? And when they asked him for the pink sheets he said and I paraphrase “My Lords the pink sheets are not there”.
The Supreme Court told them that 'no pink sheet no case.' Their case was fundamentally incompetent.
So bottom line is that they had no evidence to challenge our victory notwithstanding all the noise they made to deceive their members.
It is very important to remind ourselves that our party and the Danquah-Busia-Dombo tradition was built on the patriotism, strategic thinking, actions, dedication, sacrifices and accomplishments of such great political icons of our country and party such as Dr. J.B. Danquah, Chief S.D. Dombo, Baffuor Osei Akoto, Edward Akufo-Addo, Mr.William Ofori Atta, Alhaji Yakubu Tali, Tolon Naa, Obetsebi Lamptey, Prof. K.A. Busia, Jato Kaleo, Naa Abayifa Karbo, Alhaji Aliu Mahama, C.K. Tedam, S.G. Antor, Albert Adu-Boahen, R.R. Amponsah, J.B. Da Rocha, J.H. Mensah, J.A. Kufuor and Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo. Without them we would not be here.
We are also indebted to so many men and women who have sacrificed and continue to sacrifice for our party and country on a daily basis most of whom may not have gotten outward recognition.
Mr. Chairman, it is our collective responsibility, as members of the great Kukrudu family and as Ghanaians, to ensure that the sacrifices of these great men and women have not been in vain. They have built and handed over to us a party and a tradition that we must always treasure. We have a charge to continue this great legacy.
We have worked hard as a government under the leadership of H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and are committed to continuing to serve the good people of Ghana. Protecting our efforts, vision and legacy means we necessarily have to break the eight as we have termed it.
In this regard, let us all be aware that breaking the eight will not be easy. It has not been done before in our history but I believe that if we are united, we will break the eight. United we stand, divided we fall. Our success will depend on how well we conduct ourselves going forward; a strong united party with a focus on highlighting our successes while countering the desperate, misleading and misguided NDC propaganda. Rather than taking down each other, we must focus on taking down the NDC who will be a disaster for this country.
The NPP has a solid record of achievement in the Fourth Republic. Our party has become the most important driver of the Ghanaian vision and development agenda. We have been responsible for the most important policies which touch every Ghanaian in every corner of our nation, the NHIS, the school feeding program, the free antenatal services, the Free SHS, the free TVET program etc.
As we meet here today at Conference, we are reminded that it is the party that birthed the government. Thus, strengthening party-government relations is key to our collective success.
I believe that Insha Allah we will be able to break the eight because our record is a superior record. Whether we are talking about agriculture, industry, roads, housing, education, health, transformational policies like digitalization, social interventions and so on the comparison between us and the NDC will be like night and day. Can you remember any transformational policy implemented by the NDC in their last 8 years in Government? Can you remember any social intervention implemented by the NDC in their last eight years in government to reduce the suffering of Ghanaians?
It is important to acknowledge that we in the NPP have not solved all the problems facing Ghanaians but we have solved many problems and we have a plan we are working to. Afterall, we are only in the first year of a four year mandate which was given to us at the end of last year.
The COVID-19 pandemic has increased the cost of living virtually everywhere in the world including countries like the US, UK, Germany, Japan, Nigeria, Cote d’Ívoire, etc. and Ghana has similarly been affected.
Nevertheless, it is important to remind ourselves that notwithstanding the global economic adverse impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on economic growth, debts and deficits, at the macroeconomic level,
Inflation in Ghana today at 12.2% is lower than it was in 2016 (15.4%)
Average Bank lending rates in Ghana today (21%) are much lower than they were 2016 (32%)
According to the Bank of Ghana, the average exchange rate depreciation over the last four years (7.3%) is the lowest for any first term government since 1992. The year 2020 recorded one of the lowest rate of depreciation in the last 28 years. The cumulative exchange rate depreciation of 2.6% in November 2021 the year is lower than 9.7% depreciation recorded in 2016.
For the first time in over two decades, the trade balance (the difference between what we export and what we import) recorded a surplus for four consecutive years from 2017-2020.
Gross International Reserves are at $10.8 billion (4.9 months of import cover compared to $6.9 billion (3.5 months of import cover) in 2016
Our record of creating jobs (over 750,000 jobs) is vastly superior to the record of the NDC government which froze public service recruitment.
So if our performance on the key macroeconomic indicators (inflation, interest rates, depreciation, external reserves, trade balance and jobs) during the worst global pandemic in 100 years is better than your performance without such a pandemic how can you say your economic management is better?
The changes we are making as a party in government are historic and we are building on the distinguished legacy of President J.A. Kufuor. Ours is a government that is thinking outside the box to transform Ghana.
Under the leadership of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo:
For the first time in our history, Ghana has successfully issued a digital National ID card
For the first time in our history, Ghana has implemented a Digital Property Address system
For the first time in our history, Ghana has Mobile Money Interoperability
For the first time in our history, any Ghanaian who has a National ID card can open a bank account using their mobile phone
For the first time in our history, over 80% of adults in Ghana have Tax Identification Numbers versus 4% in 2017
For the first time in our history, Ghana has drones for medical delivery and is the world’s largest medical drone delivery service.
For the first time in our history Ghana is implementing One district one district hospital (AGENDA 111). By the end of our second term we would have built more hospitals than any government in our history.
For the first time in our history Ghana is implementing One district one factory – Our government has facilitated the establishment of more factories than any other government since independence.
For the first time in our history, Ghana has Paperless clearing of goods at the ports
We have digitized the process of passport acquisition
For the first time in our history, Ghana has digitized the process of drivers license acquisition
For the first time in our history, Ghana has implemented the Ghana.Gov platform. A one stop shop for public service delivery
For the first time in our history, Ghanaians can renew their NHIS membership from their mobile phones
For the first time in our history, Ghanaians can apply for scholarships on their mobile phones
For the first time in our history, Ghanaian students can apply for student loans without the need for a guarantor
For the first time in our history, Government is implementing a pension scheme for cocoa farmers
For the first time in our history, Ghanaians and law enforcement can find out the insurance status of any vehicle on their mobile phone using the Motor insurance database
For the first time in our history, Ghanaians were provided free electricity for life line consumers for a year during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic
For the first time in our history, Ghanaians were provided 50% reduction in electricity tariffs for non-life line consumers for a year during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic
For the first time in our history, Ghanaians were provided free water for a year during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic
For the first time in our history import duties on all goods were reduced by between 30%-50%
For the first time in our history, Government has provided Free Wifi to over 700 senior high schools, 42 colleges of education and 13 public universities
For the first time in our history, Ghanaian pensioners can obtain their SSNIT pension 10 days after making an application.
For the first time in our history, Ghana is implementing a Nationwide E-Pharmacy which I will launch next week. We will be one of a few countries in the world to have a nationwide E-Pharmacy.
For the first time in our history, Government, has implemented a One Constituency One Ambulance programme
For the first time in our history, Government has established a Zongo Development Fund
We have built more roads in our first term than the first term of any government in the Fourth Republic and we are continuing.
For the first time in our history, we are implementing Free TVET and have established the Ghana TVET service
For the first time in our history, our Government has implemented Free SHS and confounded the naysayers.
And by the Grace of God, for the first time in the history of the Fourth Republic, we will break the 8!
The future is bright for the youth and for Ghana, so lets stay with the elephant.
Thank you for your attention.
God Bless the NPP and
God bless our homeland Ghana.