Governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) has has accused opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) of thwarting the efforts of government in the fight against galamsey.
According to the party, galamsey, which largely affected water bodies under the Mahama administration, should not be politicized. The NPP said the NDC and its leader, former president John Mahama must rather commend the government for the bold decision to tackle the issue head on instead of inciting Ghanaians against the government.
Speaking at a press conference in Accra on Wednesday, the director of communication of the NPP, Yaw Buaben Asamoa said Mr. Mahama should rather channel his energy into responding to allegations against him such as the Airbus bribery scandal among others instead of attacking the EC.
He said the NDC has been beating the war drums ahead of the elections but the NPP will not allow Ghana to burn under the watch of president Akufo-Addo come December 7, 2020.
“The NDC leadership has refused to commit themselves to peaceful elections. They refused to sign the National Peace Council road map towards eliminating vigilantism. Instead, they keep bombarding this beautiful country with threats of violence if the electoral process is not done according to what they dictate.
“Whilst a clear and large majority of Ghanaians want a credible election with the support of a new clean register, the NDC leadership are threatening to burn the country down, if all of us do not bow to their desire to go back to a register that has been declared by the service provider as technically unsound and can be restored only with inbuilt risk at a cost higher than a new one,” Mr. Asamoa stated.
He noted: “As we are all aware, Candidate Mahama has waded into that debate on the side of violence. He threatens the country with consequences, obviously violent, if his personal desire to run the country without clear defined policies is not granted. Meanwhile, Candidate Mahama is yet to own up and accept the mess he left the country in, respond to revelations about his term of office and give alternatives that justify his ‘at all cost’ power grab approach.
“Let the NDC and John Mahama understand and accept finally that this country will not go back to their days favouring violence as a political solution. We have had seven elections under the 1992 Constitution and the pending eighth one will be peaceful, free and credible. We the NPP are committed to that.
The director of communication is therefore challenging the NDC and Mr. Mahama to respond to key national issues rather than doing pick and choose.
“Fighting galamsey effectively is also a national security, peace and stability issue. The NPP is challenging John Mahama to justify the explosion in galamsey activities in his tenure, with two ministers giving up on the fight, one of them citing orders from above.
“Whilst the NDC have the right to pick and choose what they will talk about, it is only fair that they respond to issues of deep concern to the country if they genuinely seek to rule. They refuse to acknowledge the enhanced performance of the cedi, with international investment predicted to be the highest this early 2020.
“We are yet to hear John Mahama on the Western Togoland issues. We are yet to hear John Mahama on the impact of the new regions. We are yet to hear John Mahama on the inter-operability contract. We are yet to hear John Mahama on the disastrous and dangerous state of the eastern corridor road, torn apart less than five years after he received a Ford vehicle in appreciation from his favourite contractor. We are yet to hear John Mahama on the success of the Year of Return. We are yet to hear John Mahama on the Government settling the full arrears due OMCs. We are yet to hear John Mahama on the impact of the closed fishing season, remember he rather chose to distribute head pans. We are yet to hear John Mahama on the successful completion of the IMF programme that he led us into. We are yet to hear John Mahama on his galamsey control policy.
“Indeed, we are yet to hear John Mahama on an international scandal the size of ‘Airbus’. In a widespread pattern of bribery to secure sales, in which court documents point to his complicity and the NPP has named him, he hides behind weak denials from his party.
“A key policy issue at stake in the galamsey fight is balancing the income and livelihood interests of a relative minority to our responsibility to provide clean, safe water to the nation at large. Our responsibility is to keep people in jobs and incomes whilst preserving the ability and right to life of the rest of the nation.
“We are confident that with the continued support of stakeholders, the road map will prove viable and effective at containing and transforming artisanal mining in Ghana,” Mr. Asamoa stressed.