The Managing Editor of the Insight Newspaper, Kwesi Pratt Jnr, has said he eagerly anticipates the address by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo this evening over matters relating to the economic challenges confronting the country.
He, however, says the address must be laser-focused on measures taken by the government to alleviate the suffering of the ordinary Ghanaian amid the economic turmoil.
Speaking on Accra-based Pan African TV on Saturday, October 29, the veteran journalist said anything short of solutions in the president’s address will render it useless.
“I don’t know what the president is going to tell us about but whatever he is going to tell us tomorrow must do with solving the problems that confront us. Anything beyond that is useless. What are the solutions? What does he propose to resolve the problems that confront the Ghanaian people. Tomorrow [October 30] that’s all we want to hear,” he said.
To this end, Kwesi Pratt Jnr has outlined four areas the president must steer away from in other not to make Ghanaians angrier.
In his view, the president should desist from drawing a sharp contrast between his administration and former President John Dramani Mahama.
He said such attempts at blame game “will annoy us even more” if the president’s address chooses to go on that tangent.
He said what was most important was that the address focused on how to stabilize the prices of goods and services as well as tackle the country’s debt stock.
“I don’t think anybody in Ghana is interested in the evaluation of the government that he took over from. It is not necessary. It is a waste everybody’s time. We don’t want to hear the Mahama administration did that and did not do that and so on…it’s useless.
“Nobody wants to hear that. What we want to do…you are the president. You are sitting in the chair. What are you going to do in order to take us out of this mess. Finish. So the blame game is not what we are expecting tomorrow. Blame game should be out.
“In fact the blame game will annoy us even more tomorrow. Nobody wants to hear that tomorrow and I hope the president and his handlers know the mood of the country and they know that tomorrow, that’s not what we are expecting.
“All we want to know is how to stabilize prices, how to deal with the debt stock which is killing us, how to make sure ordinary people too can breathe small. That’s all we want to know,” Kwesi Pratt said.
The ace broadcaster has also cautioned the government to stay clear off ceasing the savings and wealth of Ghanaians in foreign currencies.
He contended that such an action if announced by President Akufo-Addo will run contrary to the lawful practice of people being allowed to save in foreign currencies.
“I think there are some other things we don’t want to hear tomorrow and I am not alone. There have been all kinds of rumors flying around. I don’t think anybody wants to hear tomorrow the president announcing measures which amounts to the confiscation of people’s savings and investments.
“We are not responsible for this mess. The laws allows people keep their monies in the bank in dollars. On the basis of the law, people have engaged in lawful enterprise, accumulated their wealth, save their wealth in foreign currencies and so on…government should not come and seize those monies,” Kwesi Pratt stated.
He continued that President Akufo-Addo should not also announce measures to devalue the local currency nor should he redenominate it.
Kwesi Pratt said the two measures adopted by governments in previous times did not augur well for the country.
According to Investopedia.com, while devaluing a currency may be an attractive option, it can have negative consequences.
“We don’t want to hear about a devaluation of the national currencies anymore because these devaluations have not helped us over the years,” Kwesi Pratt emphasized.
“We do not want to hear demonetization and redenomination and so on…we have tried it and it didn’t work. We want to hear something fresh and new,” he added.
President Akufo-Addo’s October 30 address comes after a three-day crunch Cabinet meeting in the Eastern Region at the Peduase Lodge over the depreciation of the cedi, as well as the IMF programme and the skyrocketing prices of food and other items.
Information Minister and MP for Offoase Ayirebi, Kojo Opong-Nkrumah, ahead of the address has said that Akufo-Addo has taken key decisions aimed at rebooting the economy.
“We’ve wrapped up a three day cabinet retreat during which President Akufo-Addo has settled on key decisions aimed at responding strongly to the impact of the global economic challenges on Ghana
“This follows a week of interactions with various economic actors and inputs from the IMF negotiations so far. Tomorrow evening we start the exercise of rebooting as the Prez outlines measures. #ResolvingTogether,” Oppong-Nkrumah tweeted on Saturday, October 29, 2022.