Majority, Minority support Ghana Beyond Aid agenda

BY: Musah Yahaya Jafaru
Mr Frank Annoh-Dompreh
Mr Frank Annoh-Dompreh

Majority and Minority Members of Parliament (MPs) have expressed their support for the Ghana Beyond Aid agenda being championed by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.

They, however, disagreed on the ability of the government to implement policies and programmes to wean the country of its dependence on donor partners.

While the Majority MPs last Wednesday said the government's flagship policies would lead to the attainment of the agenda, the Minority MPs said it was a mere rhetoric not backed by concrete action.

The legislators made the comments in response to a statement on Ghana Beyond Aid read by the MP for Nsawam-Adoagyiri and Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee, Mr Frank Annoh-Dompreh.

Cross roads

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Mr Annoh-Dompreh said Ghana stood at crossroads at this point in its history, "where she must decide to either remain economically dependent on donors to fund its development or mobilise resources from within".

He noted that the choice should be a paradigm shift where the country, despite all odds, must take its destiny into its own hands and forge ahead a path of development underpinned by self-sufficiency and interdependence instead of the current dependence and reliance on foreign aid for development.

Majority's take

The Majority Leader, Mr Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, said the Ghana Beyond Aid agenda was laudable that every patriotic citizen must support.

He indicated that it was a development agenda that would be attained within a given period of time.

Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu pointed out that the One-district, One-factory policy, for instance, was a way of helping the country to produce products for local consumption.

He said the surplus could be exported for foreign exchange, and indicated that those moves would make the country self-dependent.

The Majority Leader urged all Ghanaians to "rise above partisanship and let's support this new paradigm which is encapsulated in the Constitution".

The MP for Sekondi, Mr Andrew Kofi Egyapa Mercer, said the Ghana Beyond Aid agenda was a call to action for the country to add value to education, work ethics, job market, law enforcement and the fight against corruption.

He added that the agenda was not a mere rhetoric, and that it was based on six pillars, which included the transformation of agricultural production, investment in oil and gas infrastructure and education.

Minority's rebuttal
The Minority Leader, Mr Haruna Iddrisu, however, said the Ghana Beyond Aid agenda was not captured in the coordinated policy programme of the government.

Therefore, he said, the agenda was the personal vision of the President with no time limit of its attainment, stressing that: "The Ghana Beyond Aid agenda cannot be achieved within four or eight years."

Mr Iddrisu said the government was still looking for money to fund the setting up of factories under the One-district, One-factory policy.