Governance think-tank, the Strategic Thinkers Network (STRANEK) has accused the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) of pilfering the content of the manifesto of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC).
In a publication of its findings, STRANEK said at least, five major policies that the NDC had themed in its “Peoples Manifesto” manifesto have been purloined by the NPP even though the NPP never packaged such policies in its “Leadership of Service,” Manifesto.
“Recently, the two major political parties released what they will do for Ghanaians when voted for but it seems a particular manifesto of one political party is being appropriated by another political party. The National Democratic Congress (NDC) whetted the appetite of Ghanaians with their promises and that has caused the incumbent government to fulfil some promises made in the People’s manifesto of the NDC,” STRANEK said in a statement signed by its Executive Director, Nii Tettey Tetteh.
The scrapping of the law banning the importation of salvaged vehicles is captured in the People’s manifesto but the ruling political party has appropriated it, said STRANEK According to the People’s Manifesto, the Customs (Amendment) Act, 2020 (Act 1014) will be reviewed in order to scrap the law banning the importation of salvaged vehicles.
However, on 17th September 2020, the Akufo Addo government which imposed that ban in the first place quickly reviewed its stance, saying the government has decided to suspend the implementation of the law banning the importation of salvaged vehicles.
Another knee-jerk pilfering of the NDC manifesto is the reversal of Compulsory Teachers Licensure Examination as well as National Service for teachers stated in the People’s Manifesto noted STRANEK .
Perhaps the most glaring act of copying is the Akufo Addo administration’s massive U-Turn on categorising the use of commercial motorcycles known as Okada as illegal in Ghana.
The NDC flagbearer’s promise to make Okada legal in Ghana was captured in the NDC manifesto stating that the commercial activity will be regulated to make it safer by training the riders and ensuring the riders observe necessary safety precautions including mandating them to provide helmets for their passengers.
However, on September 9, 2020, the Transport Minister, Kwasi Ofori Asiamah indicated the New Patriotic Party government has begun stakeholder consultation to decide on whether to review the law banning the commercial use of motorcycles or implement it. In a confused frenzy, on 16th September, 2020, the Vice President of the Republic of Ghana,Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, announced that the Akufo-Addo government will not legalize Okada business but will provide a better alternative for the Okada riders. The better alternative according to the Vice President of Ghana is to give the riders an opportunity to lease vehicles and pay over time.
That proposal was flatly rejected by the Okada riders.
“The fact that the issue of legalisation of “Okada” has become a matter of discussion and has caused the incumbent government to think on its feet in order to mitigate the rate at which the appetite of the good people of Ghana has been whetted by providing a better alternative is akin to appropriation of a promise stated in the People’s Manifesto,” STRANEK pointed out.