John Dramani Mahama says Nana Addo and New Patriotic Party (NPP) wasted the first year of his government when it dragged it to court over its 2012 electoral defeat.
He said the action by the NPP and Nana Addo in 2013, affected investor confidence in the barely eight months his new government was in the dock, as investors had to wait for the Supreme Court’s verdict on the election petition.
“The NPP and its assigns did what they could to make my government unpopular and they did it very well,” the former President said on an Accra-based radio station Friday February 22, 2019, when he outlined some of the factors that caused the defeat of his government in the 2016 general elections.
John Dramani Mahama mentioned the lingered energy crisis, which was christened ‘dum sor’, as another factor that contributed to the fall the government of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), even though he said his government solved the crisis.
To show commitment to solving the energy crisis head-on, he said the NDC government had to urgently bring in power badges, whilst other power plants were built as backups.
So severe was the crisis that “I told Ghanaians to hold me responsible for it, and I knew that I had a team of committed sector Minister and deputy who were also bent on seeing that we got this challenge solved.”
Albeit he did not discount how the cracks in his party also led to their humiliating electoral defeat, the former President said the lofty promises by the NPP to the electorate enticed the latter to vote out the NDC.
“The NPP is two years in office and after borrowing US$50 billion, after their lofty promises, ask them what they have to show for. They dig dug outs and call them dams,” he said.
He said the NPP’s lofty promises and endemic propaganda against him and his government gravely affected the good works and the meticulous plans his government had laid down to accelerate the infrastructural development of Ghana for a better economic growth.
“I am not saying that everything was rosy under my government. For us, we wanted to chart the path of putting in place the needed infrastructure, which would accelerate our development and build our economy.
“We experienced severe distortions in the economy with the single spine salary structure, breaking our spine. After finally, migrating all public workers on to the structure, we were left with only 27 percent of our annual revenue for national development,” he explained.
However, he said the NDC has learnt lessons from the experiences of the past and should he become the president of Ghana again, John Mahama said he would, after consultation with the leadership of his party, set up a Presidential Staffer who would be in charge of government and party relation.
“During my tour of the regions, I had the opportunity to gather from the grassroots what other things resulted in apathy, which caused us in 2016, and I have taken notice of all the complaints. And for me, the complaints by the supporters to me are eye opener.
“Should I become the president again, I will, as often as possible, get to the base of the people and the party grassroots to listen to them.
“A lot of lessons have been learnt and going forward, the next NDC government would do better,” John Dramani Mahama said.